Friday, September 30, 2011

Frog Talk / Ask-A-Frog: SMU is Still Poor

SMU Campus, September 30, 2011

Unfortunately our guest commentators have been vacationing in Columbia to prepare for Hate Week. They did send along a few thoughts and asked that I link to last year’s post b/c “honestly things have only gotten worse.”

Last Year’s Post – read before proceeding……otherwise you won’t have context.

Disciples of GP:
Before I get started, there are a couple things we need to get out of the way real quick. Some of the comments this week:

-PonyUp: But on the real, it is shocking how much you over-exaggerate drug use on smu's campus on this blog.

-Tyler Springer: Plus what up with the drug stereotype? There are no more here than any other college campus in the US.

ARE YOU FUCKING SERIOUS?? That’s 3 OD’s in ONE semester for a school with 7,000 students.

Now on to something even more ridiculous: The FW Weekly Critics Name Spitblood the “Sportscaster or Sportswriter” of 2011.

Really?? I have to agree with Jerry Fraley’s 9/29 comment

You have got to be kidding? It is an Animal House site with some of the poorest sports witting ever. You should be embarrassed you even mentioned these losers. There are at least 4 other sites that are much better. In fact, has professional bloggers & writers that put these guys to shame. Was someone payed off here? Incredible!

While “payed” isn’t exactly a word Jerry- I do agree….something is up. I was even more suspicions of corruption when I saw that this chick

edged out all our showgirls for “Hottest Local Celebrity.”

Then I took a closer look at who else won awards….

-Watchdog: Some anti-gas drilling hippies called the North Central Texas Communities Alliance

-Unused P.R. Slogan: Some anti-gas drilling hippy slogan “Fort Worth: The Southwest’s Newest Industrial Slum”

-Print Journalist: Some anti-gas drilling hippy journalist named Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe, who I’m not familiar with but I’m sure hates drilling

Financial analysis of the Barnett Shale revealed that it has had a cumulative economic impact of $65.4 billion over the past decade…drilling makes TCU rich, and as you know from last year’s post, SMU is poor.

The FW Weekly is not a bunch of hipsters who hate hot chicks and drilling...I think what Jerry is onto is the fact the FW Weekly, by virtue of this award, has put Spitblood in bed with a bunch of anti-drilling leftists in an elaborate plot orchestrated by SMU to make TCU as public-school poor as they are by doing away with our drilling.

SMU has obviously scraped together all the money from their needle park friends and bought off the FW Weekly, but why throw awards at Spitblood and involve us in their scheme??

It’s simple “friends close, enemies closer” tactics….they’re hoping to blind the preeminent SMU hater Sir Wesley Wills to this diabolical plan by showering him and the rest of Spitblood with awards, Nevin Shapiro hooker yacht parties, and (of course) some Columbian white.

I for one will not stand for this Spitblood/SMU/Anti-drilling/FW Weekly Pact. That is why I’ll be joining Anonymous (9/23/2011 8:34 AM comment) in kicking all your trust fund asses at the tailgate this weekend. See you Saturday...bring the HATE.

Spit Blood Predictions: TCU vs. SMU

It's always interesting to me, during the week of TCU-SMU games, just how few people outside of the two fanbases really understand this rivalry. Sure, everyone knows that the Frogs and Mustangs are rivals, but not really the importance each school places on beating (or at least not losing to) the other. And really, I think I like it this way. I get so beat down by overplayed rivalries like Michigan-Ohio State, Yankees-Red Sox or Lakers-Celtics. I don't need some jagoffs in the suburbs of a city 3,000 miles away debating TCU-SMU...I like it just being between the two schools and their alumni.

So tomorrow at 2:30pm, we'll get the 91st edition of the Battle for the Iron Skillet- and this year's game might be the most hyped in quite a while. Now's the time for you to register your official predictions for the game- final score, outstanding players (on offense, defense and special teams) and the atmosphere as compared to TCU's previous two home games this fall. And if you feel like it, your prediction for the Rangers' ALDS series against Tampa Bay.

Hate Week Preview.

If scientists could create a drug that would temporarily disable these parts,
Tomorrow's game would be AWESOME.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH I hate playing SMU. I actually think I hate the thought of playing SMU more than I actually hate them. It's a strange phenomenon because, truthfully, I've never actually had a legitimate reason to be wary of playing them before now. We've always clearly had the better team, even in 2005. It's just... their confidence... and arrogance... makes me want to put a letter opener into an electrical socket. And I hate it because this year the Ponies really do have a shot at winning assuming they jump out to an early lead. I've already resigned myself to this one being a dog fight. But then I see that we're a 12 point favorite... and that Cole Beasley isn't playing... and that Zach Line has a separated shoulder... and I just. can't. take it! Why do the sports gods keep teasing me like this? Why can't there just be an answer? WHY CAN'T WE HAVE A DEFENSE THAT DOESN'T GIVE UP UNDERNEATH PASSES AND A CROWD THAT DELIVERS A DECISIVE HOME FIELD ADVANTANGE??? AND WHY CAN'T I THIS CAPS LOCK key unstuck? Whew. There.

But really, what should we expect Saturday? Which TCU defense is going to show up? The mejia will have you believe that TCU has gotten better week by week defensively and if you look at the numbers it's true. However, it WOULD be true considering the quality of opponent has decreased substantially on a week to week basis, wouldn't it? Doesn't exactly help me sleep at night.

Enough grumbling though, on to the AWARD WINNING preview!

When them Frogs has that ball: I suppose I should start with the good stuff. Despite slow starts the past two weeks, the Frogs offense has been pretty damned great once they hit their rhythm. They've eclipsed 400 yards of total offense in all four games and have scored 35 points or more per game for the first time since 2005, which is pretty shocking when you consider how good Dalton's offenses were his last 2 seasons. TCU's offense is currently ranked 12th in the nation in points scored at 44, which is only half a point off last year's record pace. Not bad for a squad with 4 new offensive line starters, a new QB and without their leading rusher from the previous year. It's strange to think of TCU as an offensive minded team, but that's just what has happened under Fuenderson. The defense on the other hand... well, we'll get to that later.

First off, the big news of the week is the return of Ed Wesley. You'd be forgiven for letting this breeze past you based on the performance of Waymon James these past two weeks, but just imagine what he'll be like with a little extra rest while Wesley and Tucker take some snaps? And Wesley's return is pretty well timed as SMU is easily the best defensive front we've faced this year and, if trends hold, will face ALL year. At present they are only giving up 69 yards per game on the ground, including holding UTEP to 30 and Memphis to -14. Those are some Pattersonesque numbers right there. Of course we ARE talking about Memphis, UTEP and Northwestern State and when they played aggy they gave up 212 - 50 yards ABOVE aggys average - and 4 TDs. I'm not sure how our offense stacks up to that of the ags, but I'd say we're closer to them than we are to those other three. LBs Taylor Reed and the guy SnK referenced - I am not going to try and spell his name from memory - lead the way for the Pony front, racking up sacks and TFLs like their last names were Brock and Carder. They should present a pretty solid test for our boys up front, but if there's any team on SMUs schedule built to exploit run D deficiencies, I'll give us the nod.

If there is a weakness for SMU it's their relative inability to defend against the pass - we know something about that - giving up 188 yards per game. As an offense we are averaging 230.3 yards passing - a number that sounds lower than I imagined - and have 10 TDs. Clearly we seem to prefer "big" plays through the air for scores which, outside of the aggy game, is something the Ponies do not give up. However, they haven't been able to take advantage of too many errantthrows, only picking one on the year, and given Pachall will be one of the best QBs they face, here's to hoping that trend won't change this week. You'll hear a lot about Chris Banjo, but fellow DBs Ryan Smith and Kenneth Acker have actually been more productive. Still, aggy torched them through the air, UTEP did an admirable job and Memphis was at least proven to possess a real live actual QB with working arm. I'll give a little bit of credence to the UTEP win after watching a bit of their game against Houston last night, although it goes both ways. On the one hand, SMU held UTEP to 306 total yards; they had 533 last night. But on the other, SMU only put up 360 yards, a number that Houston doubled. It won't be a Baylor level aerial show for Pachall, but I think he'll be able to competently move the ball once our run game is done gashing the Ponies up front.

It won't be a points explosion for TCU, but assuming we can move the ball on the ground as we always have, there should be just enough openings in the secondary to zing a few deep balls.

Edge - Frogs.

When them Ponies has that ball: Aw geez, do we REALLY have to talk about it? As mentioned above, the good news is that leading WR Cole Beasley is, if not completely sidelined, at least hampered by an injury he suffered last week against Memphis. June Jones hasn't commented on the situation yet, so I wouldn't expect that to be known until gametime. Regardless, assuming he sits, the SMU and QB JJ McDermott are SEVERELY going to miss his catching ability as he leads the team in receptions with 31. He'd lead the team in yardage, too, if it weren't for his likely replacement, Darius Johnson and his 27 catches for 398 yards and 2 scores. You'll recall Darius Johnson as the young man who kept the Ponies in the game far longer than expected last year by leading the team with 72 yards, while Beasley had little impact. Fortunately Aldrick Robinson is no longer around, or we'd be looking at a very similar situation to last year, and that's not good for business.

The Ponies rank 15th in the country in passing yardage with 333 per game, and if that doesn't put the fear of God in you, I'm not sure what will. Ever since benching Yao, the SMU offense has kicked it up a notch and is more potent through the air now than they were all of last year with Mr. Write Check. So while you can't compare apples to oranges with different QB's, I'd say we have a lot more to watch out for this year than last. SMU averages 7.8 yards per pass and 13.5 yards per completion; the Frogs give up 7.8 yards per pass and 11.9 yards per completion. So... ferk.

And then of course there's Fatback Zach Line, who is second in the NCAA in rushing TDs with 11. I remember last year falling into the "fat white running back" trap and writing him off before he went and rushed for 139 yards against a defense FAR more talented than what we have this year. SMU only ranks 88th in overall rushing this year, and Line reportedly has a separated shoulder, although Felix Jones also had one this week and had the best game of his career. So... crap.

If there is one thing to latch onto its that SMU LOVES giving the ball away, having already tossed 6 picks - 3 for McDermott - and lost 6 fumbles. That's some symmetry I can get behind. At the same time though, our defense hasn't exactly been opportunistic, only picking two passes and forcing 6 fumbles. Look, I could go through our defensive statistics to fill some space here, but there's not really any reason to because you know them. We've improved, yes, but SMU is statistically MUCH closer to Baylor than they are to Air Force, ULM or PSU. The loss of Beasley hurts, and I think we will control Line better than we did last year, but I can't tell you we have an advantage here without being struck my lightning.

Edge - SMU.

Special Teams: TCU has two kick off returnmen with TDs, two shifty punt returners with big play abilities, a kicker who MAY have discovered the secret to success - hint: 7 hours of sleep and no sugar after 9- a punter who, despite one fail punt last week has put together a nice year and some of the better coverage teams in the country. The only battle SMU wins is of the "Margus Hunt has long arms" variety, so expect at least one blocked PAT. I'll be fair and point out that, as SMU hasn't let anyone score TOO much, they haven't had many return opportunities to show their business, but I feel confident in giving this one to the good guys.

Edge - Frogs.

What I Think Will Happen: Now, the hard part - how will this game play out? The SMU game is always a very difficult one to dictate beforehand because emotion plays such a large role. 2005 was won on emotion, and emotion kept the Ponies in the game a lot longer than we wanted last year. Fortunately, though, the Frogs seem to feed pretty well off the emotion of the home crowd, not having dropped a game in this series in FW since 1993 when the SWC was still in existence. Unfortunately, our home crowd has 99 problems and attendance IS one, although I have a pretty good feeling it will be filled up tomorrow. Personally, I think SMU is going to come out firing. Without Beasley, they're going to let Zach Line bang around and soften up our front and then dink and dunk our LBs and secondary to the point that GP may develop a heart defect on the sideline simply from watching. It's worked pretty well for everyone else we've played so I don't see why that would change. But, HSO? I don't think we give up a HUGE pass play. And let me qualify huge - I don't think we give up a pass play over 30 yards. There will be some 15-20 yarders, and perhaps even a 29.99 yarder or five, but nothing more. They're going to score points on us, and they're going to take an early lead, but those points won't be the back breaking kind. I think this is the week our secondary finally realizes they play for the 20th ranked team in the country and that losing to SMU AND Faylor in the same year is just not an option.

On offense, I see La Manga - La Mambo Manga? La Manga es Mambo? too far? - putting up a nice day with 200 yards and 2 TDs. But, same as it ever was, our run game is the engine that drives the train and, despite SMUs dominance on that side of the ball so far this year, I'm not sure they can stop a rotation of 4 competent backs, although I don't see Ed having major impact in his first week back. I've called for Aundre Dean to have a breakout the past couple of weeks - something I am NOT declaring this week - but I don't think any particular player is going to outshine the others. This is going to be a complete team effort from our backfield... and the home streak will continue.

The Pick - TCU - 34, SMU 27.

SMU2BCS: Broadcasting Delusion Across the WWW

This is your brain on drugs.

I'm too lazy to go back and track down which of our award winning blog comment leavers actually posted the link to this site a few weeks back, but I'm surprised nobody else mentioned this. I spent about 2 minutes looking at this and had to step away before I passed out from laughing.

Let's start from the top. The website says to "Be Heard!" because "Texas Legislators need to do what's best for Texas, and when it comes to college football, what's best for Texans is stabilizing the Big 12 ". I'm pretty sure that our Legislators should be worrying about much more important things that Texas football. Besides that, remember what happened the last time the state government got involved in football conference alignment? Oh yeah... TCU and SMU both ended up in the desert.
Besides... begging the government for help is so Commie. Is that why SMU wears red? Communist Ponies! (Fact: SMU chose red and blue because they so desperately want to be Ivy League that they bogarted Harvard and Yale's colors)
The site is pretty neat... and by neat I mean pathetic. They try to build up their athletic program and Dallas. But to do so, they have to stretch the truth in ways that would make Bill Clinton proud. For instance:

  • During its 100-year history, SMU has competed in a BCS conference for 85 years. (The Southwest Conference ended (1995) before the BCS existed (1998). To say that the SWC was in the BCS is like saying the United States defeated Santa Anna at San Jacinto.)
  • The “Football Capital of the World,” Dallas supports big-time college football and deserves a BCS conference school. (And yet, at this time, SMU is the highest level of football played more than once a year in Dallas. Dallas also gets the Red River Rivalry and the Cotton Bowl Classic... both of which beat out the average SMU football game attendance. Maybe Grambling State or Prairie View A&M deserve a BCS spot too. Oh, and the "Football capital of the world" title is debatable... many others claim that too.)
  • Dallas is the ninth-largest city and part of the fourth-largest metropolitan area in the nation. It’s also the No. 1 visitor and leisure destination in Texas. (Citation please... I see San Antonio mentioned more often than Dallas... of course, you'll note that here they mention Dallas as PART of the 4th largest metropolitan area which also includes Fort Worth and Arlington... more on that later).
  • Troy Aikman backs SMU to Big12 (They jump all over this, although they gloss over a slight insult: "I’d love to see SMU as a really great team again." as in "yeah, you guys are kinda okay I guess". Of course, this praise was given to the Ponies "prior to his luncheon appearance at SMU’s Athletic Forum at the Hilton Anatole" so really, what was he going to say while being paid to talk to SMUsers?"
There are also lots of pretty FB and Twitter buttons, Twitter feeds, and internet "news" that helps support their view.

And what about their nice "reasons" they they list in two different spots (totaling 15), some of which include:
  • ATHLETIC SUCCESS: Under head football coach June Jones, a former national coach of the year, SMU has earned consecutive bowl berths and won back-to-back division titles. Its men’s basketball team, led by former national coach of the year Matt Doherty, posted a 20-win season in 2010-11. SMU has won eight Team Championships, over 100 individual NCAA Championships, and 138 Conference Team Championships, while posting 147 NCAA Top-10 team finishes. (This is about FOOTBALL you morons... the BCS doesn't give a rat's ass about Basketball, Soccer, Volleyball, Tiddlywinks, Shot Contests, or how many hookers Craig James can kill (answer: 5). And yes, you had back to back Bowl Game appearances which were your only 2 appearances since the 1980's. And one of those YOU LOST TO ARMY ON YOUR HOME FIELD. You know who else has been to two bowl games in that same time frame? Rice.)
  • FINANCIAL COMMITMENT: SMU has the largest athletic budget of any non-AQ school. It’s committed to competing at the highest level of collegiate athletics, opening a new $60 million on-campus football stadium in 2000 and embarking on an $80 million plan to build new facilities and improve existing ones. (Isn't that cute? They spend more money to get less results that say, TCU or Boise State... hell, even Hawaii has made it to a BCS bowl. That doesn't seem like a plus, more like a "we spend a lot, but it doesn't help that much." Besides, TCU is spending more than your athletic budget on renovations to our stadium. And the Old AGC was better than that High School field the Ponies play on currently.)
  • STRONG ACADEMICS: SMU ranked first in the 2009-10 National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics Directors Cup Division I Final Standings. Further, The Economist ranks SMU’s Cox School of Business #1 in the United States for “Potential to Network” and five Cox School departments were recognized among the nation’s top business schools for research productivity based on more than 1.5 million scholarly citations. Only seven schools ranked in the top 30 in all five categories: SMU Cox, Harvard, Stanford, University of Chicago, MIT, NYU, and UCLA. (Again... it's about Football and money... nobody gives a shit about your academics... if it was about academics, the NCAA would've burned down the SEC years ago... in fact, there seems to be a much stronger inverse correlation to academics vs athletics when it comes to the BCS, so maybe you should erase this one.)
  • DALLAS: The ninth-largest city and part of the fourth-largest metropolitan area in the nation, Dallas is the No. 1 visitor and leisure destination in Texas. Home to the Big 12 Conference offices, Dallas is centrally located and within a four-hour flight from most North American destinations. DFW International Airport is the world’s third busiest airport, offering nearly 1,750 flights per day and providing non-stop service to 144 domestic and 44 international destinations worldwide annually. In addition, Dallas Love Field Airport is conveniently located 10 minutes from downtown. In 2011, Dallas became the first city to host the Super Bowl, the World Series, and the NBA Finals, all within the same 12-month period. (Blah, blah, blah, Dallas facts that the BCS doesn't give a shit about... also, let's get something straight, since you are so careful to never mention any city other than Dallas lest anybody remember that there is a team that can actually win BCS bowls on the West Side of the Metroplex: DALLAS only hosted the NBA Finals... ARLINGTON in TARRANT COUNTY next door to FORT WORTH hosted the World Series and the Super Bowl. Dallas taxpayers didn't put of jack shit to see those hosted there so quit claiming them in your BCS BS portfolio. Also, the Dallas Cowboys haven't called the city of Dallas home since 1971... currently they don't even reside in Dallas County. TCU has more claim to the SB, WS, and Cowboys at this point than SMU.)
  • SMU has won C-USA’s Directors’ Cup 11 times in the last 14 years. In the 2010-11 NACDA Directors’ Cup, which quantifies a school’s overall success in collegiate athletics, SMU finished ahead of Boston College, Colorado, Ole Miss, North Carolina State, Utah, Wake Forest, Oregon State, Washington State, Mississippi State, Rutgers and Kansas, all members of AQ conferences. (You finished 3 spots above TCU. We scored all 90 of our points in Football. You scored yours in Football (25 pts) and Men's Soccer (73 pts). Now I love soccer more than most, but once again THIS IS ABOUT AMERICAN FOOTBALL! Oh, and btw, did you know that there is no Men's Soccer in the Big 12? So if you get in there, then what?)
  • SMU is the only FBS athletic program in Dallas, a top 5 TV market and arguably the most football-intense region in the state/country. (Nice try... but either the Dallas Market includes Tarrant County in which TCU rules the college football landscape or it doesn't. You can't have it both ways. The Dallas/Fort Worth market is Top 5, not just Dallas. And besides, as any TCU fan will tell you, the Big 12 has more loyal TV viewers in the DFW market than TCU and SMU combined so this is a moot point.)
  • SMU is just one of two universities in the U.S. with former National Coaches of the Year leading its football and men’s basketball programs. (FOOTBALL! RESULTS! NO ONE GIVES A SHIT!)
  • Led by Matt Doherty, the SMU men’s basketball team is coming off a 20-win season in 2010-11. (sigh)
  • In terms of academics, SMU ranks among the top 25 BCS schools in the U.S., according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2011 guide of the best national universities. And SMU’s Cox School of Business is one of the few schools in the nation with three MBA programs ranked in the top 15 by Bloomberg Businessweek. (Because the BCS cares about MBA programs... right?)
  • SMU is home to the George W. Bush Presidential Center, consisting of the presidential archives, a museum, and an independent public policy institute. (Not really sure that is something to be proud of and further... NO... BODY... GIVES... A... SHIT!)
Basically, this is a website that probably includes more reasons why SMU should be ignored for the BCS than anything else. Fundamentally, this site proves that they just don't get it. Considering the site is run by "a group of SMU alumni and friends of the university", it should send up red flags that the people who seem to be the most concerned about their football team are utter morons who probably couldn't convince a hillbilly to suck down a Mountain Dew.

There is one extremely fun aspect to this site. If you go here, you can send a pre-written email to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Speaker Joe Straus, and State Senator Judith Zaffirini that explains exactly why our government should ignore the fact that our state is falling apart and make sure that the Blow Ponies get into a BCS Football Conference because they are smart and have a good basketball team. But I did say there was a fun part, right? Well, you can "personalize" (ie, edit) the message before you send it. I'm going to say that SMU should go BCS because if they don't, Craig James will probably go all Jack the Ripper again. I may also include that SMU is willing to supply the Texas House with all the nose candy it wants.

Anyway, I hope that this meets the high standards of our award winning blog and that maybe ya'll won't think I just do incoherent posts about women's soccer and Ross Evans.

I leave you with this...

Who loves ponies?

Morning Dump

TCU coach Gary Patterson expects energy to return against SMU Star-Telegram

TCU-SMU: what you need to know Dallas Morning News

TCU faces challenge from SMU pass game ESPN

PPS Campaign 2011 - $10 A Win

It's time to get back to the best that we do, and that's raising money for the Purple People Seaters. Our annual golf tournament was a huge success this year, raising over $4,000 and I want to capitalize on the momentum we have going.

Last year we tried to get readers to pledge 1 dollar for every point of victory. This was a great idea in theory until we started pounding everyone we played. People's pockets wore thin and dropped off the donation train. In fact, we had 2 readers actually live up to their pledge which ended up being $385 (a small price to pay for such a magical season).

This year's campaign: $10 A Win

Our goal this year is to get 100 readers to pledge $10 a win. Now I know it's the end of the month, and $30 is already owed, but payday is just around the corner and hopefully you will owe $40 on Monday. Let's get on board and start helping out this incredible organization by clicking here to donate. There will also be a sidebar button, and a Dave creation that will track our fund raising progress.

Thank you to all the readers who have donated in the past. We collectively have enabled PPS to take hundreds of underprivileged kids to football games and other sporting events throughout the last few years, and I'm proud to say we are their biggest supporter.