Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spitblood Psychic: The Future of Rooster.

The One Time Everyone Liked Peyton Manning.

As the most beloved and ballyhooed prospect to come out of TCU since LaDainian Tomlinson, we all have a heightened sense of interest where Red will end up playing football professionally. So rather than make you all dig through the muck and mire that are sports related internet rumors, we will compile them all here, team by team, as they come along. For the sake of brevity, we will only feature team's that have scheduled an interview or workout with Andy, look at their current QB situation and draft picks and make one of our patented hasty assessments from there. We will also give more credence to team's with picks in the 2-4 rounds (amendment: 1-3 rounds, because that's looking more and more likely) because we're optimistic and can't see Dalton lasting beyond there.

Today we'll take a look at another potential landing spot that would have Dalton surrounded by the fattest fan base in the NFL, the Indianapolis Colts.

QBs Currently on Roster: Curtis Painter and Peyton Manning.

Draft Picks: Round 1 (22); Round 2 (21); Round 3 (21).

Why Rooster Fits: BECAUSE ADAM SCHEFTER SAID SO! But really, it's not just Schefter as this one has been gaining some steam in the rumor mill these past week or so. Basically, with the clock striking 35 on Peyton Manning, the Colts have started taking a cold, hard look towards the future of the franchise, sans ole fetus head, and with only Curtis Painter on the roster it's bleak. Seriously, have you seen Curtis Painter play? To paraphrase Dude, Where's My Car, a trained dolphin could play football better than him. As Jim Sorgi learned before him, being Peyton Manning's backup is the best and worst job in the NFL. Best because you get paid to do pretty much nothing, but worst because the Colts are notorious for resting starters towards the end of the year, so you're inevitably getting thrown to the fire at some point and without much practice the results are typically bad. So basically, if Manning were to retire tomorrow, the Colts would be mega screwed. So why not groom a worthy predecessor, one who may not have the collegiate accolades and hype that Manning had coming out of Tennesee, but a strong character guy with great leadership abilities? Dalton would practically be Manning part deux, except hopefully with the ability to not choke is big game situations. He would immediately become Manning's back up and would be in a pretty nice situation where he wouldn't be expected to contribute at all his rookie year and probably the one after that. Plus, unlike Brady, Manning strikes me as a guy who, with his career winding down a bit, would be willing to give a pointer or two to his replacement and help ease the transition. Call me crazy, but this doesn't sound all that bad.

Why Rooster Doesn't Fit: Basically you have to decide if Manning sees himself as the next Brett Favre or not. If he is, then Dalton would probably be better off elsewhere because that'd mean Manning would have at least 5 more seasons of starting in him. The thing that worries me is that Manning is excepted to negotiate his final contract once the lockout ends, and I have a feeling a home town discount isn't in order as it never is. If he signs, say, a 5 year deal worth $100 million plus, why is he going to walk away from that? And why would he help his successor which would essentially usher himself out the door? Quite honestly, I have no idea what he's thinking, but at the same time you have to think that any QB in the league nowadays looks at the joke Brett Favre became once he left Green Bay and swears he'll never end up that way. I can't see Manning being a guy who would go play in Oakland or somewhere like that just to prolong his career. At the same time, I'm not sure the Colts are dumb enough to handcuff themselves to an aging QB into his 40s, either. Truthfully, there have been enough rumblings with the Colts to make it seem like they're giving Andy some serious consideration. Regardless if they see him as the QB of the future or not, they need a better option at backup and Dalton would clearly fit that mold for the time being.

TCU-UTPA series preview

The Frogs finally appear to have harnessed a little bit of momentum with their series sweep of Air Force over the weekend, but they'll have to switch gears to overcome their pesky habit of dropping midweek games to in-state opponents when UT-Pan American comes to Lupton for a two-game set starting tonight.

While the Falcons, like many of TCU's opponents, could mash the ball but not pitch- the Broncs of UTPA appear to be just the opposite. They are hitting just .268 as a team and are averaging less than 2 extra-base hits per game (the Frogs, whose bats have been the subject of much complaining from the fans, are hitting .310 and average nearly 4 extra-base knocks a game). The bright spot in the Broncs' lineup is Stuar Macinnes, a senior outfielder from Austin who is batting .400 on the year. On the flip side, UTPA is holding opposing batters to an identical .268 average and have a team ERA of just 3.75.

These stats for UTPA are taken from a relatively small sample size, as at 9-8 on the season they have played 10 less games than TCU- illustrating the difficulty that some smaller-profile programs have in non-conference scheduling. The Broncs have an RPI of #142, and have a few fairly respectable wins on their schedule- one over Louisiana Tech and two over TCU's former CUSA rival, Saint Louis.

Pitching depth is one of the biggest keys to winning in the college baseball postseason, and it will be tested this week as the Frogs will play 5 games as opposed to the usual 4. Schlossnagle has assigned the two pitchers with the highest ERAs amongst regular contributors to start against two pitchers for UTPA who have lower ERAs. Erik Miller, the face of the Frogs' pitching inconsistency, starts tonight with his ugly 6.16 ERA against 6'2" righty sophomore Luis Flores, who gives up 5.06 runs in every nine innings he pitches. Then tomorrow it's Kyle Starrat and his 4.85 ERA going up against 6'3" Canadian lefty Kyle Kotchie and his impressive 2.70 ERA.

So will this be a continuation of the momentum gained against Air Force, or another disappointing midweek setback? Let's hear your thoughts in the comments section.

Rose Bowl rings

Credit Angry Trey with getting this photo of the Rose Bowl rings that the team was awarded at their banquet on Saturday night. You can see more photos on his blog.

Cashner to make 1st start today

Former TCU closer Andrew Cashner, who made his Major League debut with the Cubs last season, won a spot in the Northsiders' starting rotation in spring training and will make his first-ever Major League start this afternoon against the Diamondbacks at Wrigley. With fellow Horned Frog alum Sam Demel in the D-backs' bullpen (he hasn't allowed a run yet in two appearances and has the team's only win), there's the chance that TCU could be represented on both sides of today's game, which gets started at 1:20pm and I'm sure is on WGN.

This comes the day after Jake Arrieta won in his first start of 2011, outpitching the Tigers' Rick Porcello (you might recall that Matt Purke, in his negotiations with the Rangers two summers ago, was asking for "Porcello money") and helped the O's to reach 4-0 for the first time since 1997. He allowed just one run in six innings of work to send the sellout crowd at Camden Yards home happy after the home opener in Bodymore, Murdaland.

Morning Dump

TCU quarterback Casey Pachall draws praise

Casey Pachall speaks to media
Sport DFW

3-point stance: Stoops a little scared of '12 schedule?

Gameday: TCU baseball vs. UT_Pan American

TCU hosts UT Pan American in midweek series

Winkler earns multiple weekly honors