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Old 23rd August 2010, 07:17 PM   #1441 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

The soap opera of Brett Favre continues. He played about ten snaps or so for the Vikings last night, and imho, more power to him. He had one of the best seasons of his career last year, getting the Vikes to the NFC Championship game. Will be interesting to see if he can play that well again, at the age of forty.
Glad to see the 'niners still won, however.

Just in case you think the preseason college poll comes out too soon, how about the preseason Heisman watch? Not a snap played in college ball yet, but we still have a top ten list of who "should" be in the running.

Heisman Pundit’s 2010 Preseason Heisman Watch | Heismanpundit

Amazing to see that Mark Ingram of Alabama is not even listed. Yes, I know, the pundit believes there will never be another two time Heisman winner, but if Ingram's stats are better than last years, and Alabama gets to the title game, I do believe he will have a legitimate shot.

So, Terrelle Pryor of Ohio State is considered a front runner with Jacory Harris of Miami at number 2. The two teams play against each other in Ohio Stadium on Sept 11th, so that should increase the winner's chances greatly. I do respect Pryor's ability, but didn't think he was that good, especially in the shadow of Troy Smith. I hope Pryor has a damn good year.
OSU has a decent schedule this year, opening against Marshall on the 2nd and then Miami.

Speaking of the future, OSU has the (considered) number two recruiting class in the nation behind Texas, with the five star, most highly rated high school quarterback named Braxton Miller verbally commiting to the buckeyes.

Scout.com: Football Recruiting

Trust me, I do know how little all that means. The last time Ohio State landed a highly touted quaterback, his name was Justin Zwick, who went on to do nothing in college, was replaced early by a qb no one had ever heard of named Troy Smith, who went on to win the Heisman. Go figure.
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Old 24th August 2010, 10:57 PM   #1442 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

Gurney... you and I are going to have to tap-dance around each other a bit this season. As a lifelong Badger and Packer fan, we might have some differing opinions.

Some commentary on current topics:

- Brett Favre is dead to me. I'm glad he came back this season but only because that's at least sixteen more opportunities for me to cheer for someone to knock his helmet off with his head still in it.

- Nebraska is an outstanding addition to the Big 10. I think it puts the conference at the sweet spot of twelve teams that allows for a big time conference championship game at season's end. Plus, an East/West division would yield two pretty even groups and preserve most of the important regional rivalries.

- Really looking forward to OSU visiting Camp Randall on Oct. 16th. Fully expect both teams to be undefeated and the winner to get a leg up on a BCS bowl game and possibly a shot at a national championship.

- Most overrated team of the preseason polls? Boise State followed closely by Iowa. Underrated? Watch out for Arkansas.

Chin straps on and mouthguards in... let's play some football!
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Old 25th August 2010, 07:16 PM   #1443 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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Originally Posted by Croaker View Post

Some commentary on current topics:

- Brett Favre is dead to me. I'm glad he came back this season but only because that's at least sixteen more opportunities for me to cheer for someone to knock his helmet off with his head still in it.

- Nebraska is an outstanding addition to the Big 10. I think it puts the conference at the sweet spot of twelve teams that allows for a big time conference championship game at season's end. Plus, an East/West division would yield two pretty even groups and preserve most of the important regional rivalries.

- Really looking forward to OSU visiting Camp Randall on Oct. 16th. Fully expect both teams to be undefeated and the winner to get a leg up on a BCS bowl game and possibly a shot at a national championship.

- Most overrated team of the preseason polls? Boise State followed closely by Iowa. Underrated? Watch out for Arkansas.

!
Croaker, good to meet you, now let the dance marathon begin....

I can understand how you feel about Favre. Being a longtime 49ers fan, it was really, really, really strange seeing Joe Montana in a Kansas City uniform. I'm ambivalent about the Packers or the Vikings, but if I were a Cheesehead I'm sure I'd be sticking pins in my Brett Favre voodoo doll about now. Ultimate stab in the back to be playing in the same division as his old team.
I do, however like to see some of these old timers do well, but he couold have been a bit classier about it.

Nebraska IS a good addition to the Big Ten, but it seems odd considering their location in the country. I thought Pitt or Rutgers may have been a better fit geographically. I would have loved to see Notre Dame come join, but when you have your own tv channel at your beck and call (NBC) I knew it wasn't going to happen. My God, the Irish play Purdue, Michigan and Michigan State every year, so their schedule wouldn't have been much different.
As far as the East/West divisions you refer to, the biggest reason I don't want to see a Big Ten football tourney is that it would diminish the OSU-Michigan game way too much. Almost always, this rivalry is for all the marbles, at least for one team. A tournament would definitely take that away.

I've always respected the Badgers man! OSU will have their hands very full as usual up in Madison. No matter what kind of year Wisconson seems to have, they always give Ohio State problems.
Back when I had tickets, I got to watch OSU/Wisconson in Ohio Stadium when Ron Dayne was their running back. Talk about a beast!! Very surprised he didn't do better in the pros.

You might be correct about Boise State, although I do tend to root for them and for some small colleges in general. I would like to see how they do against some major competition, but any team with a blue field is okay with me.

For whatever it's worth, I'd love to see Arkansas fall flat on their faces. I lived in Columbus, Ohio for forty years of my life, but for the past five I've lived in Louisville, Kentucky, where Arkansas' present coach, Bobby Petrino, coached the U of L football team to an Orange Bowl victory. He turned his back on this city, by telling everyone he wasn't looking for a new job when in reality he was, then he snuck away from the Atlanta Falcons by pinning notes on the players lockers, and just never seemed to me to be a class individual.

Here's to an interesting season of football Croaker. Maybe you and I will make a little cyber bet (no money of course, maybe just bragging rights) a little closer to Oct 16th.

'Til next time, my man!!!


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Old 25th August 2010, 09:42 PM   #1444 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

Favre could've gone anywhere else and I'd have wished him well. I had no issue with him playing in New York. I guess unless you're a Packer or Viking fan, you really can't understand the depth of out-and-out malice between the two groups. Even with the Bears, the rivalry is mostly respectful... but not with the Vikings. I hope the Packers sign a rookie free-agent punter and give hime the number four jersey.

Pitt or Rutgers would've been a solid addition to the Big Ten, but I like the history and tradition of the Cornhusker program. Plus, it's about 300 miles from Iowa City to Lincoln, about 100 miles closer than the Columbus to Happy Valley trek. I don't think I could've stomached Notre Dame in the conference though. *ugh*

I'll still be rooting for the boys on the smurf-turf this season as well. I just think they're in a little over their heads. Good luck to them though.

I'd forgotten about the Bobby Petrino factor. No doubt that what he did to UL... and then the Falcons... was one of the most classless things ever in sports. I was thinking more along the lines of how impressed I was with Ryan Mallett (sp?) last year. If you were gonna build a quarterback from the ground up, he's probably what you'd end up with.

Cheers, Gurney!
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Old 26th August 2010, 04:27 AM   #1445 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

Croaker,

I can see we are going to have to be careful with our posts. I am a life long Viking Fan, and positively thought Farve was the most over rated quarterback ever, until.... he played last season for the Vikings. It was hard to swallow but with a season like that I could do it. I now think him only mildly over rated.

I have no real prejudice against the Packers, for years they were my second choice NFL team, but there are some completely obnoxious Packer fans around here, which have made me move the Packers in front of everyone but the Oakland Raiders as a team to hate.

Oh, yea, I also root for the Hawkeyes, and I love to see Nebraska, my second favorite team in the Big 10. I think they are a perfect match. But we might as well flush the Ohio State/Michigan game. First Michigan stinks, and second the title game will after this year be the last game of the season which will NOT be that one. Of course, I suppose that they could divide the conference in such a way that they were in different divisions, but it is hard to see how one could be North and the other South, or one could be East and the other West.

In two years I foresee an Ohio State vs. Nebraska or Iowa championship.
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Old 26th August 2010, 04:50 AM   #1446 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

Hey Parson,

Like you, I was blissfully neutral on the subject of the team across the river for many years. I had the misfortune of going to college at UW-Eau Claire in the late '80s when the Twins were winning a couple World Series titles and the Viking fans were coming out of the woodwork. Now I spend a couple days a week in the La Crosse area for work and the rivalry is hot and heavy there. It's OK though, some of my best friends are Viking fans... I can peacefully co-habitate. ;-)

As for your Hawkeyes, is Stanzi the real deal? Seems like you guys lost quite a few starters from last year. Either way, big game in Iowa City this year the week after Bucky plays Ohio State in Madison. Regardless, I'll be rooting for Iowa during Bowl season.

Peace.
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Old 26th August 2010, 10:09 AM   #1447 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

I'm not sure how Grim feels but I think we get along well and if we can do it, anybody can!

But, Croaker, I do have Oct. 17 penciled in on my calendar and, if Favre's helmet is still on, hopefully it'll come off then.
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Old 26th August 2010, 03:45 PM   #1448 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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Hey Parson,

As for your Hawkeyes, is Stanzi the real deal? Seems like you guys lost quite a few starters from last year. Either way, big game in Iowa City this year the week after Bucky plays Ohio State in Madison. Regardless, I'll be rooting for Iowa during Bowl season.

Peace.
I wish I could say that Stanzi is the real deal, but I haven't bought that yet.

What I am buying is that Kirk Farentz is the real deal. Hayden Frye knew what he was doing with assistant coaches i.e. Barry Alvarez and Farentz. The Hawks did lose some key starters, but their too high ranking comes from returning so many players. The ranking is too high because Iowa plays with very few 5A players, unlike OSU, Michigan, USC, etc. Iowa must make do with the 3A to 4A players who must play almost flawlessly to compete with the really talented teams. Preseason rankings for Iowa should never be more that about twenty-fifth, because unless the ball bounces right and they can avoid injuries they can easily lose 4 or 5 games a season, even one with 11 wins like last year.
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Old 27th August 2010, 01:18 AM   #1449 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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... Iowa plays with very few 5A players, unlike OSU, Michigan, USC, etc. Iowa must make do with the 3A to 4A players who must play almost flawlessly to compete with the really talented teams.
As a former coach, I'll take a team full of three and four star kids that know they have to play their collective a** off every week over a bunch of pampered five star kids every time. Best of luck this season!
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Old 27th August 2010, 01:26 AM   #1450 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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... I do have Oct. 17 penciled in on my calendar and, if Favre's helmet is still on, hopefully it'll come off then.
J-Sun... I don't often root for the 'Boys, but I'll be cheering for them that day. I'll actually be at the Packer game with the Dolphins that day, but I'll have that one on the radio on the way home!
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Old 27th August 2010, 05:08 AM   #1451 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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As a former coach, I'll take a team full of three and four star kids that know they have to play their collective a** off every week over a bunch of pampered five star kids every time. Best of luck this season!
We have something in common. I also coached high school football. Probably more years ago then you are old. I also coached girls basketball and track. And I wholeheartedly agree that if the choice is between the 5 star kid who loafs and relies on talent, or the 3 star kid who busts his back side every day in practice, and every play of the game, give me the 3 star kid. But if you are lucky enough to get that 5 star who works hard and wants to learn --- Katy bar the door. You are headed places we all want to go.
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Old 27th August 2010, 07:31 PM   #1452 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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As a former coach, I'll take a team full of three and four star kids that know they have to play their collective a** off every week over a bunch of pampered five star kids every time. Best of luck this season!
I've never coached squat in my life, but as an avid sports fan I couldn't agree with you guys more.
A very good example of this would be last seasons NCAA basketball tourney. The University of Kentucky had an all star cast of prima donnas (imho) but the team that took it all was Duke, the one with no names, but a ton of good chemistry and great coaching. I prefer teams like that any day of the week.

Shifting gears back to football, are there any Patriot fans out there? I must admit, even though Tom Brady came from that disgustingly evil team up north, I like him a lot. I hear a lot of people put him down for being a "pretty boy", but no one throws a prettier and more accurate deep ball in the league than he does.
I do reside pretty much in Peyton Manning country, so my opinion here is in the minority, but I'll take Brady over Manning any day. Why? Brady is 3 for 4 in Super Bowls, Manning is 1 out of 2, and 9 for 9 in the playoffs. Both the Colts and Pats have had pretty much the same calibre of talent as far as team rosters over the years.
I do have respect for Manning, but at the end of the day, at least for me, it does come down to the championships.

The greatest pro qb's through history, for me at least, are:

1. Montana
2. Unitas
3. Brady
4. Bradshaw
5. Elway
6. Aikman
7. P. Manning
8. Young
9. Staubach
10. Marino/Favre (tie)
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Old 29th August 2010, 06:56 PM   #1453 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

A lot of pundits are talking about Dallas being a favorite for the Super Bowl. I'm afraid this is going to be like the last time we "won the Super Bowl" in preseason and didn't make the playoffs. I've rarely seen a more disgraceful performance. Most disappointing was the fact that our defense sucked. Excuses are that we were missing 2/5 of our O-line (which is the weakest part of our offense at the best of times, anyway) and missing an important guy from each of the D-line, linebackers, and secondary and missing our top draft pick, among others. And that when other teams play Dallas, they seem to forget it's preseason. But "being vanilla" on our part is the opposite of an excuse. If we're that incompetent and confused and unable to execute "vanilla", I shudder to think how many penalties, blown timeouts, turnovers, and other failures there would have been trying to execute "exotic". And really, there is no excuse. When Roy Williams and a rookie kick returner are the highlights of your game, there aren't many highlights.

The Bengals weren't ready in the HOF Game but look to be good. (BTW, the Bengals just cut Bryant - they seem to be happy with the T.Ochocinco experiment.) The Chargers and Houston (finally) look to be real good. Yes, Dallas sucked, but those teams came to play and played well, taking advantage of their opportunities. Congrats to them.

With that and the Saints-Chargers game from the other night, both Cul and Wiglaf should have been reasonably pleased - both starting units looked ready and good.

Two weeks for Dallas to go from incompetent to elite, or the new Redskins are going to have a happy start to their season.
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Old 30th August 2010, 01:03 AM   #1454 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

As long as Wade Phillips is coaching them, Dallas won't win squat. He is a horrible coach. Same with the Chargers and Norv Turner.
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Old 30th August 2010, 02:02 AM   #1455 (permalink)
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Re: Football (american football to those across the pond!)

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With that and the Saints-Chargers game from the other night, both Cul and Wiglaf should have been reasonably pleased - both starting units looked ready and good.
Oh, I'm more than pleased. Barring a serious run of injuries, I think we might just set the pace in the NFC again. The only concern is a Jekyll and Hyde defense. I'd like to see a little more consistency on that side of the ball.

I think Green Bay will be this year's Minnesota, pushing us the whole way. In the AFC I think the Colts and Baltimore are the teams to beat. Should be a good season, in any case.
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