Thursday, September 20, 2012

Players to Watch Game 3: Virginia Cavaliers

To be fair that's UVA Lacrosse, but I didn't get to hate this week, so this will have to do.

Fresh off their 56-20 pounding handed to them by Georgia Tech, the 2-1 Virginia Cavaliers come to Fort Worth for another bright and early Saturday morning start.  I'll be in the parking lot drinking early, but truth be told I might just start drinking now (Wednesday as I type this) and not stop until the end of the fall after having my heart torn out by Waymon James's knee.  Anyways, UVA will be here as well as a few hundred wannabe SEC frat-tastic fans, and that should make for a pretty enjoyable Saturday.  But let's see what UVA has to offer from a football standpoint.  

Offense:  QB #16 Michael Rocco (6'3, 225 Jr.) and QB #14 Phillip Sims (6'2, 215 Soph.)

Will Sims see more action on Saturday?

Does UVA have a quarterback controversy?  I don't really think so or at least I haven't heard anything of the sort, but Sims, the highly touted Alabama transfer, has seen playing time in all 3 games so far this year and was able to get the Cavaliers in the endzone twice last week while they were getting pasted by Georgia Tech.  I guess Phillip Sims (not to be confused with Phil Simms, in fact they are very, very different) saw the writing on the wall in Tuscaloosa and realized that he was not going to unseat national title winning QB A.J. McCarron, so he headed on to UVA.  Many thought Sims would win the job outright this fall, but that wasn't the case and the reigns were handed to Michael Rocco.  Rocco has not been too impressive thus far this fall (712 yards, 4 TD's, 3 INT's, 3 rushing yards), and the talented Sims is lurking in the background.  Sims is 13-17 for 111 yards, 2 TD's and 0 INT's on the season.  Understandably the sample size is small, but when you struggle to put points on the board against Penn State who is fielding a JV squad and struggle mightily against an average Georgia Tech team (all ACC teams are just "average" in my book), then there might be some reason to look for playmakers elsewhere.  If you see Rocco struggle to move the ball early, don't be surprised to see Sims get the nod at least for a few series to see if he can make anything happen.  If nothing else, it would be a change of pace for the UVA offense.  

Defense:  LB #53 Steve Greer (6'2, 230 Sr.)

Yes, that's Steve Greer, and that is a serious case of Dumbface.

When looking for a player to watch defensively, I usually check to see if anyone stands out causing turnovers first.  Apparently that's not a priority at UVA since I see that they've forced 1 turnover this year through 3 games.  Yikes.  So that's not a good barometer.  However, Greer statistically reminds me a little bit of last week's defensive player to watch, Toben Opurum, and Opurum gave Pachall fits all day, especially when he stripped his TD run from him.  So if it ain't broke, don't fix it.  Greer seems to have a knack for getting into the opposing backfield as well, accounting for 3.5 tackles for loss and 2 sacks on the young season, equaling his 2011 total already.  He's also 2nd on the team in tackles with 24.  Finishing 2nd team all-ACC last year, he led the team with 101 tackles but missed the Peach Bowl with what they call a "lower extremity injury".  I think it's called Chlamydia, Steve.  I think last week our OL was exploited a little bit and I know we'd all like to see some improvement from what we saw.  I'd say a key to doing so is finding #53 and putting a hat on him every play.  

Around The Big 12: Week 4

Sorry for the delay on the post this week, but I promised not to post anything until the truth about Waymon James and his knee came to light.  I kid of course.  Work and grown up things took priority over the blog.  Shame on me, I know.  Anyways, let's get right to it and see what the Big 12 has in store for us.  It's a slate of games that includes a chance for an upset special and our first of many high profile in-conference matchups.

Baylor (2-0, 0-0) @ Louisiana Monroe (1-1) - Friday Night Treat, 7pm, ESPN

Baylor tried to shit the bed a week earlier than expected last week as they struggled for 3 quarters against the mighty Bearcats of Sam Houston State.  Trailing 20-10 at halftime, Baylor would eventually rally to put away Sam Houston State 48-23.  That is a sentence that should never have to be written or read.  Pathetic, Baylor.  Just pathetic.  Baylor still has awesome WR's, but QB Nick Florence isn't anything near Robert Griffin.  Maybe all the dorks in Waco can see that now that he threw 2 picks against SHSU. Oh, and that Baylor defense?  Same story, different day.  411 total yards for SHSU.  Yeesh.  The ULM win over Arkansas is looking less impressive by the minute as John L. Smith is looking like not only the worst coach in football, but the craziest as well.  The ULM Warhawks did take Auburn to OT last week as well and if they hadn't given up a halftime Hail Mary they probably would've won, but Auburn sucks this year too.  SEC=very, very, VERY top-heavy.  Keep in mind we've got the Joe Tessitore/Rod Gilmore (side note: please die, Rod Gilmore) duo calling the game, so we are in for a guaranteed insane game like they get every Friday.  I hate Baylor more than Vince Young hates successfully managing his money, but they still pull it out.  Final Score:  Gaylor 35 - ULM 31. 

Maryland (2-1) @ #8 West Virginia (2-0, 0-0) - Saturday 11am, FX

West Virginia coasted to a very un-Holgorsen-esque 42-12 victory last week over lowly James Madison. Freak of nature QB Geno Smith went for 411 and 5 TD's.  His last 2 were when they were already up 28-5 and 35-5 late in the 2nd half, so not quite sure why they felt the need to throw there, but oh well.  That's the Dana Holgorsen we all know and love.  Be a dick to no reason to lowly FCS schools that are named after presidents.  If George Washington University had a football team, I'm sure Holgo would play them and be running flea-flickers in the waning minutes while giving the middle finger to a statue of one of our Founding Fathers.  I don't know much about Maryland, but I do know they're in the ACC, their coach used to be the fattest man this side of Mark Mangino, their current coach is Randy Edsall who jumped ship from UConn to go to another middling football team, and UConn subsequently shoved it in his face by beating Maryland last week 24-21.  Maryland has also barely beaten Temple (36-27) and William and Mary (7-6).  Let me reiterate that last point for you:  THEY BEAT WILLIAM AND MARY 7-6!!!  This game could get nastier than the Penn State showers circa 1998.  I won't be watching because I don't condone televising this kind of massacre.  Final Score:  WVU 66 - Maryland 20.

Kansas (1-2, 0-1) @ Northern Illinois (2-1) - Saturday 2:30pm, ESPN3 if you are into mediocrity

Kansas still sucks.  Losing 20-6 to us did not impress me.  We play a clean game and it's probably 48 or 51-6.  Some of you will sugar-coat it to try and make yourself not feel as bad about how we played and say "yeah, Kansas looks really improved and they could sneak up on some people!".  No they don't, and no they can't.  Northern Illinois's's's 1 loss is to Iowa, who also sucks, 18-17.  They snuck by Army last week 41-40 at West Point.  Their 2nd win was a 35-7 win over something called a Tennessee Martin.  I don't know much about Northern Illinois either, but if they've won 2 games then that's good enough to declare them better than Kansas.  Final Score:  NIU 21 - Kansas 20.

#15 Kansas State (3-0, 0-0)  @ #6 Oklahoma (2-0, 0-0) - Saturday 6:30pm, FOX

This should be the ABC Saturday night game, but Fox seems to be closing ground on that market pretty quickly after what they pulled off with USC/Stanford last week and landing this game this week.  Oh, and the Erin Andrews thievery they pulled off.  Well done, Fox.  OU was off last weekend so they had an extra week to prepare, but everyone remembers their incredibly "meh" 24-7 win over UTEP in the opener and nobody saw their 69-13 drubbing of Florida A&M.  So really this team may remain more of a mystery than any other in the Big 12 (other than maybe ourselves...) at the moment.  Consider me one of those not sold on OU or their 5 o'clock shadowed mouth-breather QB Landry Jones.  As predicted here, Kansas State struggled with North Texas last weekend as they escaped with a 35-21 victory.  I'm going to toot my own horn real quick...Alright.  Ready to go again.  QB Colin Klein is what OU wants to have with Blake Bell AKA "The Belldozer" but they don't because Klein can throw.  It may look funny.  Okay, it may look REALLY funny, but it works.  He threw for 230 and 2 TD's and ran for 85 and another score in the narrow victory.  He appears well on his way to a 2,000 passing, 1,000 rushing season, something he fell just 82 yards shy of last year.  Bob Stoops pees down his leg in at least 1 big game per season and I think this will be the first of a couple this year for Stoops and Co.  Also, I'm pulling for Kansas State strictly because of K-State Mask Guy.  Final Score:  KSU 31 - OU 27.  

Big week for bye weeks in the Big 12.  Texas, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, and Iowa State are resting up following convincing victories against garbage opponents.  When your Ole Miss friends are touting SEC at the end of the season like they always do, point back to what happened to them on Saturday night.  Ole Miss football - woof.


NFL Frogs in Week Two

Week two of the NFL season has come and gone, and since the Cowboys season is now officially over (over-reaction alert!!!), it's time to start focusing on our pro Frogs and their on field successes.

Joining the 11 Frogs on pro rosters is Offensive Tackle Herb Taylor, a third year pro who was added to the Jaguars active roster last week. Congrats Herb!

I was in the car all day driving back from Lawrence, so I didn't get to see any of the games, though I did listen to them on the radio - shout out to Sirius! So for the non-skill position players, I won't have much info. Ready to be home on a Sunday and take advantage of the Sunday Ticket package I severely overpaid for and watch some Frogs in action!

Marcus Cannon - OT - Patriots (lost to the Cardinals 20-18) I'm not sure how much Mr. Cannon had to do with Tom Brady being sacked four times, but I am going to go out on a limb and say the Hoodie was not happy with his O-Line on Sunday.

Tank Carder - LB - Browns (lost to the Bengals 34-27) Our boy Tank can't get off the bench in Cleveland, but at least he got a front row seat to the Red Rifle's bounce back game.

Andy Dalton - QB - Bengals (beat Cleveland 34-27) Yes, it's Cleveland. And yes, their QB collects social security, BUT, Andy had a heck of a game for the Bengals in their home opener. Rooster threw for 318 yards on 31 attempts and had three TDs against one INT while completing a very Pachall like 77% of his passes. The defense continues to be a concern for Cinci, but at least Dalton looked more like the rookie of the year candidate that led the Bengals to the playoffs.

Clint Gresham - LS - Seahawks (beat the Cowboys 27-7) Let's just say it wasn't Seattle's special teams that were the issue in the Pacific Northwest.

David Hawthorne - LB - Saints (lost 35-27 to the Panthers) Hawthorne had a middling game, collecting only two tackles as New Orleans was absolutely dominated by Newton and the Panther O. The Saints are proving that coaching matters.

Jerry Hughes - DE - Colts (beat the Vikings 23-20) Mr. Hughes got his first sack on the season to go along with two tackles filling in for the injured Dwight Freeney. Maybe, jut maybe, Hughes is going to finally get his chance to shine.

Colin Jones - S - Panthers (beat the Saints 35-27) Jones got his first tackle as a Panther.

Jeremy Kerley - WR - Jets (lost 27-10 to the Steelers) Kerley had an up and down game for the Jets, with two receptions for 67 yards, which more than doubled the next closest total. Unfortunately, he did lose a fumble and was a non-factor on special teams.

Marshall Newhouse - OT - Packers (beat Da Bears 23-10) Newhouse was okay in week two, though Rodgers was sacked five times on the night, it was Cutler that was truly running for his life.

Jason Phillips - LB - Panthers (beat the Saints 35-27) no stats

Herb Taylor - OT - Jacksonville (lost to the Texans 27-7). The Jaguars are terrible, but congrats on making the roster anyway!

Daryl Washington - LB - Cardinals (beat the Patriots 20-18) Daryl Washington was the leading tackler for Arizona with 13, including 11 solo and one TFL. He was a major catalyst in the upset of the day in Foxboro.

As usual, let's here your thoughts for the week ahead in the comments. Will Washington continue his dominance and double digit tackles streak? Does Dalton throw for another 300 yards against   Washington and out-duel their young gunslinger? Does Kerley get back in the end zone for NY/NJ? Will Jerry Hughes decapitate Blaine Gabbert? Should the Cowboys even bother playing football anymore? Is it okay for me to revert back to my roots and jump back on the bandwagon of my hometown Niners? Lots of questions as the season makes it's first big turn!

Morning Dump: 09/20