Monday, December 31, 2007

Granger tries to raise money for WV Athletics

by Joe Huff, Senior Editor
Oklahoma City, OK (LTP) - A contrite DeMarcus Granger issued a statement today through his press agent, Jamelle Holieway, regarding his arrest for allegedly stealing a coat from the Burlington Coat Factory. As a result of various Fiesta bowl events that both teams partcipate in, he felt a special camaraderie with the West Virginia team. After reading reports on that WV would have to pay upwards of $1 million for tickets not purchased by Mountaineer fans, the Dallas, Texas native decided to take matters in his own hands.

“Being from Texas and playing football, stealing stuff is second nature. I just felt like doing this for a good cause.” As to why he would remove the anti-theft device from the coat and then walk out of the store WITH the anti-theft device in a bag, Granger said, “We go over this sort of things in drills all the time. With the practices leading up to the bowl game, though, the coaches give a lot of reps to the younger players and as a result I got sloppy with my technique. If I get back on the team in spring, I should be able to work through it and be ready for the offseason.”

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Sooners beat WV in Hoops

Sat down and watched the game. 24 hours later, I'm still stunned by Longar Longar. They actually give him the ball on offense, and he occasionally displays skills there. No one's mistaking him for Karl Malone or anything - except for the elbows part.

Blake Griffin is a stud.

The game was one of the more entertaining I'd watched in awhile (admittedly my college hoops watching has fallen off in the past few years), even after the 10-10 after 10 minutes start.

I was impressed by the Sooners resilience, coming back in OT and second OT to finally take the victory.

the big part of this was that the Sooners beat a quality for on the road, which should the Sooners keep playing this well, could get the Sooners back into postseason action.

Chick-Fil-A Bowl Limerick

Auburn's coached by Tuberville
If he gets to leave, he will
This bowl sells chicken
That's not finger lickin'
Who wins? I think the Tigers will

Insight Bowl Limerick

Travel to Tempe with Boone
Go north and you'll see a sand dune
Hoosiers play the Pokes
The team's full of chokes
They'll be losing the game real soon.

Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl Limerick

Kentucky plays Florida State
The 'Noles academics aren't great
They cheated on tests
But Bobby ne'er rests
The 'Cats should win this by eight.

Brut Sun Bowl Limerick

Oregon's mascot is a duck
In Eugune, the official's suck
The South Florida Bulls
Have all the right tools
And we wish them the best of luck.

Roady's Humanitarian Bowl

To Boise goes Fresno State
At home, they are leaving eight.
They'll play Georgia Tech,
Whose team is a wreck,
'Cause Chan's coaching's not that great.

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl

Air Force takes on the Cal Bears
Blue is the hue Air Force wears
The game starts early
Without Liz Hurley,
I don't think anyone cares

Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Great Pirate strikes again

Bond J. Bond at DiscoTech! has a nice bit on Coach Leach's humanitarian efforts this weekend. If you recall, a Tech fan started raising money to pay Leach's fine for criticizing refs, and this story breaks down the end results.

West Virginia - OU in Hoops

Today the Sooners play the 'Eers in hoops. We'll get another game to measure the Sooners against credible national competition before conference play.After home victories against Arkansas and Gonzaga, the Sooners now travel to Charlestown, WV to play Bob Huggins' Mountaineer team. The Moutnaineers are more than credible., they are the 12th ranked team in the country. Per the Sagarin rankings, this is the second best team the Sooners have played this year, with the exception being the Memphis Tigers on a neutral court in NYC.

The Sooners toughest opponent in a hostile environment to date has been the trip to LA to visit Southern Cal, which resulted in a 66-55 loss. The only other pure road game the Sooners have played is in Fort Worth, against the TCU Horned Frogs.

To date I've been pleasantly surprised by the Sooners, so we'll see what happens later today.

Petrosun Independence Bowl Limerick

At the Independence Bowl
Nick’s dancing will take its toll
Buffs aren’t the Warhawks
Nor the Gamecocks
Dyslexic fans will shout Tide Roll!

Valero Alamo Bowl Limerick

JoePa should be in a casket
Penn State then blew a gasket
It was a bad joke
Now don't steal that Coke
At Valero, you can't mask it.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Autozone Liberty Bowl Limerick

A bowl sponsored by Autozone
Gives O'Leary a chance to hone
His long resume
Which claims the Knights play
The Sooners running the Wishbone

Meineke Car Care Bowl Limerick

Led by a Demon Deacon,
Wake Forest's no longer reekin'.
In a crappy bowl,
The Huskies will roll.
Visit Meineke if your car's squeakin'.

Holiday Bowl Review Limerick

Chris Jessee did not touch the ball?
He shan’t have been there at all
The Horns bailed him out
The game was a rout
Joe Jamail will not have to call.

Dec 28 Bowl Limericks

Champs Sports Limerick
BC is led by Matt Ryan
Three losses left his fans cryin'
But Up against Sparty
The Eagles will party
And the Big Ten will keep dyin'

Texas Bowl Limerick
Texas Bowl two dot zero
Will Dalton be the hero?
He can't run for ****
His passes don't fit
But the Cougs still fall below.

Emerald Bowl Limerick
This bowl game is for the mutts;
Both offenses are stuck in ruts.
They can't run or pass
Cashews give me gas
If you watch this game, you're nuts.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Writers Block

We're back from snowy Okla (4.5 inches in Seminole County), and absolutely stuck on a poem for the Holiday Bowl. The Bowl Limerick streak is in jeopardy. Fear not, faithful readers - both of you - we have a new post over at Pistols Firing to get the juices flowing.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Big 12 Days of Christmas

On the twelfth day of Christmas, the Big 12 sent to me...
Twelve Chizik Nickels
Eleven wins for Kansas
Ten Jammal Lords Leaping
Nine Coaches Staying
Eight Bowl Teams Playing
Seven Longhorns Pleading
Six Alert Levels
Five Quarterbacks
Four cupcakes

Three Coaches Leaving
Two Counts of Car Theft
and a Bass Fishing Championship!

Merry Christmas! We'll be back on Dec 26-27ish.

Motor City Limerick

Your season is a pity.
When going to Motor City
is considered neat.
Detroit is no treat.
Most people think it's gritty.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Sheraton Hawaii Bowl Haiku

Boise suspends three.
No Statue of liberty
Needed for ECU.

LandThieves Review of the Year Without Santa Claus

By special request, we are reviewing the Christmas Classic 'The Year Without Santa Claus' this evening. For an interesting slant to the review, we will do our best to correlate each roll to a present or past sports personality.

Mrs. Santa - Sooner women's coach Sherri Coale. If Santa wasn't gonna get off his butt and get the job done, she was.
Santa Claus - Merv Johnson, Director of Oklahoma Football Operations and longtime Sooner operative. Took belief in Sooner Magic just a little too far. He's the most paternal figure I could think of related to Sooner sports. Coach Switzer could be Santa, if Santa had a thing for coeds.
Snow Miser - Jim Tressell. Cold weather football is right up his alley. Don't need that blasted speed running through all that snow.
Heat Miser - Rich Rodriguez. RR is from the south, but will to bend a couple of rules if he can secure some northern territory.
Jangle Bells - Joe Dickenson, OU Offensive Coordinator, 1998, the last year of the Desert Era.
Jingle Bells - Larry Coker, former Okie State offensive coordinator and former HC of Miami Hurricanes. Jingle and his brother Jangle didn't seem to be the brightest bulbs.
Mother Nature - Those flashes of lightning to whip the Miser brothers into shape made me think of the McBride Electric Power Play of the game, hosted by the inimitable Bob Barry.
Southtown Dog Catcher - Paul Dee, interim Chairman of the Committee on Infractions and Miami-FL AD.
Mayor of Southtown - U of O President David Boren. Personality didn't match, but physically, give David a mustache and the two are twins.
Mr. Thistlewhite - Bob Stoops. Thistlewhite still believed in Santa. Stoops still believed those kids in 1999 could win football games.
Ignatius Thistlewhite - Sam Bradford. The boyish complexion of Iggy reminded me of the Sooner QB.
Blue Christmas Girl - Jessica Simpson. Clearly you could see the effects of a little Proactiv on that smooth complexion.

Pioneer Las Vegas Bowl Limerick

In the Pioneer Vegas Bowl
The Cougars will go on a roll
Bruins fired Coach Karl
The team's in a snarl
They won't dig out of that hole.

New Mexico Bowl Haiku

New Mexico Bowl
Is made out of pottery
and shouldn't be watched

Tuesday, December 18, 2007 bowl poerty

The bowl celebrates pizza site
Southern Miss will surely fight
The Bearcats from Cincy
I'd rather watch Quincy
That man would fight for what's right.

San Diego Police Surge Almost Complete

San Diego, CA (LTP) - San Diego Police Chief William Landsdowne announced today that the surge is almost complete in preparation for the visit by the University of Texas Longhorn football team. "Failure to protect the citizens of San Diego from the Longhorn football team would be a disaster for the county."

"The riot gear is scheduled to arrive on December 21st, the academy graduation is on the 22nd and the players arrive on the 23rd, so everything is going as scheduled. The first activity for the Holiday bowl teams will be a Navy and Marine Corps luncheon. We believe this will be a good transition event for new police officers, as there will be MPs nearby for reinforcements if trouble breaks out. The citizens of San Diego should be safe throughout the week."

"We believe we have made some errors in judgement. For example, extending the invite may have been a good to ensure a high quality football game, but it put millions of people in harms way. "

Landsdowne did extend an olive branch to the Longhorn football team. "Twelve years ago, Ricky Williams was known as a weird kid from San Diego. Now he's known as a marijuana addict that played football at the University of Texas and the NFL. We're grateful for them taking him off our hands."

Monday, December 17, 2007

I love the Internet

First of all, it's a wonderful place for information. Second, it's a wonderful place for humor. Third, it's a great way to spread gossip/hearsay/speculation. That all being said, it let's one check in on the opponent after they just lost their head coach.

A place I found today is West By God Virginia, and they are coping quite well with RR's departure. As an additoinal bonus, you'll find there that Saban's agent, Jimmy Sexton, allegedly contacted WV about the opening there. There appears to be some connection to Saban and West Virginia, and it'll be interesting to see how this thing plays out. IMO, I don't see Saban leaving for WVU, but I could certainly understand that a coach, regardless of how good they are, could land at a place like Norman, Tuscaloosa, Fayetteville, Baton Rouge, etc. - where they are dysfuncionally passionate about their fuball - and after a year say, "Huh? What did I get myself into?" I read an article earlier this year that Stoops wondered if he'd made a mistake after one year at OU.

Sexton is also the agent for many other coaches, including Fulmer, Tuberville, Spurrier and Houston Nutt, so this could be much ado about nothing.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Rodriguez resigns from WVU

West Virginia Coach Rich Rodriguez, fearing a major butt kicking in the Fiesta Bowl by the Sooners, has chosen the easy road and resigned to take the head coaching job at Michigan. Said Rodriguez, "I watched ESPN's college playoffs, I realized the Sooners were the best team in the country. I just didn't want a piece of that."

Rogriguez was asked whether he could win a national championship easier at Michigan instead of West Virginia. "You bet! Look, at Michigan, you have to beat Notre Dame, a couple of MAC schools, then cruise through the schedule until the Ohio State game. Once the NCAA catches up to the Sweatervest, that matchup will be a piece of cake. In the Big East, we have to go up against a national recognized opponent every week. Take our loss to Pittsburgh, for example. They have a great history there, with Curvin Richards, Mark May, and Tyler Palko. It's tough to beat them no matter where you play them."

Landthieves insider Drew Henson asked Rodriguez if he really met with a financial advisor while in Toledo. Rodriguez nearly broke down in tears. "I'm tired of answering that question. Look, I'll be honest with you...I suck at math. I knew WV was paying my $2.0 million, and Michigan offered me 2 and 1/2 million. I've never been good with fractions, so I flew to Toledo to talk with a friend of mine and see which one was the better deal."

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Sooners beat Hogs

I got my first extended view of the Sooners men's hoops team today. They looked much better than I expected. I was impressed with freshman Blake Griffin, and I was also impressed with Longar Longar. Obviously, we'll find out later in the year if this win means anything, as both eams get into conference action. That all being said, I believe that Arkansas is probably more well regarded than the SFA Lumberjacks, so we'll take this W over a nationally recognized opponent and move on. The Sooners play Gonzaga on Thursday, so we'll get another view of the Sooners against a nationally regarded foe.

Some other time i'll get into my rant about Longar Longar and his development under Sampson vs Capel.

Houston, you don't have a problem

The Cougars hired OU co-offensive coordinator Kevin Sumlin as their head coach this week to replace the departed Art Briles, who left for Baylor. Sumlin served the mighty Sooners well. Personally, my first recollection of Sumlin was when RC Slocum turned oer the Aggie offense to Slocum in 2001. The Aggies went from staid and ineffective to almost unstoppable. Anyway, Sumlin ended up at Oklahoma and has been a valuable member of the staff.

I wish him the best in Houston.

It should come as no surprise that the Sooners are expected to consider Moses for the job as co-coordinator opposite Kevin Wilson.

Personally, I think this is the logical choice. I expect Heupel to some day take over the reins of the Sooner program, if Stoops ever decides he's had enough.

R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl Haiku

Memphis plays the Owls.
Howard Schnellenberger drinks
All the scotch in town.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl Haiku

Today I bring you my inaugural Bowl Game poetry, which is not sponsored by Capital One or ESPN.

Utah plays Navy
In the Bowl's third edition.
Give me a playoff.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Boone State Loses its Fedora

More in depth coverage at Pistols Firing!

Why the Bowl Games Won't Go Away and How I would Blow them up

Here are my three reasons that we are not getting a playoff system in 1-A football anytime soon, and after that my solution if they let me blow the whole thing up and start over.

There's a nice article in Sports Business Journal about the money in the bowl system. Sponsors and ESPN are pouring a ton of money into the present system. As much as ESPN likes to drive debate about playoff, they are financing the present system and promoting it big time.

There's money in it for the schools...fundraising folks and university officials from the school entertain donors and alumni, it's a one week gig, and everybody has fun, and half the teams go home victorious with hope springing eternal for the following year.

With a playoff system, hope does not spring eternal. With a playoff system, every team but one is playing "shouldawouldacoulda" and finding something to complain about from Jan to Aug. It makes the "will you give us money?" discussions harder in that situation. Plus, potential travel for 2-3 weeks over the holidays to suck up to boosters wouldn't be much fun.

For teams, it's about the extra practice. It's a huge benefit to have that extra 15-20 sessions that you get between your final regular season game and the bowl game. If you read the articles in the local papers, you'll find the bowl prep teams are having a lot of the underclassmen and second and third teamers get more reps in the early practice sessions. It's like an extra spring schedule. Put in a playoff system and that's eliminated.

Coaches are competitive, and they want to win their games and all, but in reality, a bowl that's not giving you a MNC is basically an exhibition game after the season. In fact, way back when, the MNC was announced BEFORE the bowls.

If I may go off on a tangent (it's my blog, I can if I want) we say the present system is screwed up. Roll back the clock for the bowl system setup 15 years. Your big bowl lineup would be: USC v Ohio State in the Rose Bowl, Texas vs. West Virginia in the Cotton Bowl, LSU vs , and Oklahoma vs Virginia Tech or Georgia in the Orange Bowl. More chaos there than what we have today. In a twisted way, we're better off, but still not solved.

How do you choose?
The concept that "we'll just pick 8 or 16 teams and solve this" has lots of do you get the teams?

The argument that "Division 1-AA, II and III do it" is valid, but flawed. The 1-AA playoffs picked 16 teams. They picked the top 16 eligible teams in 1-AA, per the coaches poll. The participants include Delaware, Delaware State (boy, I bet that's a heated rivalry), McNeese State, Wofford, etc. The average undergraduate population of the 16 schools, per my research at Wikipeida, is 10,798. The largest school represented in the 16 is UMass, which lists 19,934 undergraduates. Name the schools in the 1-AA finals this weekend.

On the other hand, I looked up the undergraduate population of the top 16 schools in the USA Today/Coaches Poll. The average undergrad population of these schools is 25,782. Twelve of the schools represented have larger undergrad bases than UMass. Why does this matter? When 1-AA announces their poll, and the State University of Central Kentucky gets the short end of the stick, not many people give a crap. When the 17th ranked Texas Longhorns (36,878 undergrads), or 18th ranked Tennessee Volunteers (2ok undergrad), are on the outside looking in, you not only have a ton of students and former alumni, but you have schools that the entire state identifies with.

The residents of Central Kentucky aren't even sure if they are in the Central, Northern, Eastern, Western or Southern part of the state. There's not nearly the allegiance. The schools aren't on CBS or ESPN family of networks every week. There's much less uproar. Have you seen anyone breaking down the 1-AA playoffs and stating that SUNY-Binghamton was screwed by not getting in? Exactly. Have you heard much uproar about the 5th ranked North Dakota State team, winners of two games this year against 1-A foes, getting left out of the playoffs because they're in a provisional year? No love for Grambling or Georgia Southern for being left out? I'm sure there were a couple of people upset outside of the immediate family, but they got over it.

One of the ways Grambling got over it was by cheering on LSU in the SEC Championship, and I'd venture that many Georgia Southern fans became huge Tennessee fans that week, pulling for the Georgia Bulldogs to get into the MNC game.

Think back to the Oregon-Okla game in 2006, the one with several officiating gaffes. The entire Sooner state was in disarray...the Sooner fans from being hacked, the Cowboy fans from laughing their butts off at their rivals misfortune. Fellow SHS alum and Sooner Pres David Boren even took a public stance of outrage. It was almost comical. If that's Eastern Washington playing the Ducks, no one cares.

That all being said, here's my proposal:

  • Divide the D-1A into four tiers. There are 119 teams, with one provisional, in D1-A. Put 30 in each tier. You can call the tiers, Premier, Upper, Mid American and Boone State and Friends for all I care.
  • Play 1 game at the first of the year as an exhibition game with a team out of your tier. Play 10 games within your thirty team tier.
  • The top 4 teams start a playoff. How do you come up with the four teams in the playoff? That's a selection committee. You have a coaches poll, sportswriter polls, some computer rankings and some backroom posturing, just like NCAA Hoops. Coaches poll doesn't come out until week five, each coach has a vote, and every voter's selection is published.
  • The bottom four teams are demoted to the tier below. The top four teams in the tier are promoted to the tier above.

The benefits of this: i) schedule is 13 games max; ii) aside from teams that fall way off the map (see Dame, Notre), the teams are playing peers and every week is a relatively competitive game - GameDay would have a smorgasbord to choose from every week; iii) there's new teams in the mix every year; everybody has a shot at a championship.

Why this doesn't make sense? i) it really blows up the bowls. But does that matter? Sure, the Rose Bowl has a tradition, and ditto for Orange, Fiesta and Sugar, own down to Cotton and the Holiday. Raise your hand if you will miss the Kotex Independence from Feminine Napkins Bowl. People don't remember childhood memories of the Meineke Car Care Bowl, or the Texas Bowl, or whatever; ii) it also doesn't make sense because left leaning bureaucrats would have to really tell North Texas and Louisiana-Monroe that they are in the D flight. Presently, they can be delusional at the first of the year that if all fell into place, they might make something beyond the New Orleans needs air conditioning bowl.

You may think my idea is wacked, but it's a better solution than this.

Going where no man would go...

not many Sooner sports blogs are covering the Baylor Bears like we do here. Frankly, when my options for coverage are 1) season review of women's volleyball; 2) analysis of the mens bb loss to Stephen Freaking Austin; 3) covering women's hoops, I'm going to say, "hey, what's up with Baylor?"

part of that is the fascination with BU coach Art Briles. I loved watching Stephenville play when Briles was a h.s. coach, and Houston's been a treat to watch with Briles at the helm. Today the Waco Trib posted a couple of interviews with Briles, and one comment caught my attention.
Jerry Hill asked, "What's the between our offense and the offense we'll see
under you?" Briles response was, "The difference is we finished 10th in the
nation in rushing this year (239.92 yards per game). That’s one of the
differences. But at the same time, we’ve thrown for over 3,000 yards every
season. Which isn’t great, but it’s not bad. It’s throwing it around a little

Being the investigative journalist that I am, I decided to look at the BU record book. The Bears have thrown for over 3000 yards in a season twice - in 2006 and 2007. Things could be looking up for the Bears.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Inside Information on the Jayhawks Bowl Selection

We here at landthieves were puzzled by all the projections that indicated Kansas would play Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl. Then, the Jayhawks accepted an invitation to play in the Orange Bowl. after seeing this picture last week, however, we researched further into our vast contacts in the Jayhawk administration. We contacted Ed Manning, the best father/assistant coach/truck driver money can buy. Per Ed, the Kansas folks wanted to get Mangino near some fruit. Apparently the spectre of Mangino near a bunch of Tostitos chips was too much to bear.

Heisman Trophy Awarded today

Today the Heisman Trophy will be awarded to someone. My vote would be for Tim Tebow, but the Downtown Athletic Club hasn't awarded me a vote.Additionally, we'll wish the winner all the best. Sometimes it doesn't work out that well.
Photo courtesy of the good work of Curtis Edmonds at whom I heard about via the fine folks at BearMeat.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

New Aggressiveness at Cash Machine U

Yesterday we witnessed the bold new direction that you’ll see the Cash Machine U football team take under the direction of new football coach Mike Sherman.

In the
press conference announcing his hiring, Sherman said in the press conference that announced his hiring that he wanted his players to be aggressive on both sides of the ball. Well, yesterday Aggie OL Yemi Babalola (no relation to Yogi Bear) and DE Brandon Joiner apparently demonstrated some of that newfound aggressiveness.

Allegedly, Babalola and Joiner joined forces to make their way into an apartment, bind the resident and a friend with tape and held them at gunpoint while taking several small items.

Sources close to the matter indicate that Interim Coach Gary Darnell updated several VIP Connection insiders on the matter early Wednesday via email, informing them that “We want to be better than Texas at everything.”

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

T Boone Fights Back

Pistols Firing reports T Boone is having a watch party to offset the limited market penetration of the NFL Network. Follow it over there.

Join Landthieves ESPN College Bowl Mania group

I got tired of waiting for Yahoo! to come up with a bowl picking game. I got one setup at

Join the LandThieves group over at The group password is 'thieves'.

See you over there.

Boone State on the NFL Network

Boone State's Insight Bowl game will be televised on the NFL network. Follow along with Pistols Firing for exclusive coverage of the dilemna this poses for both Cowboy fans.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Coaching update

  • The Bugeaters, as expected, hired Bo Pelini this weekend. I like the hire. He's familiar with the Husker cult, he has a good track record as an assistant, and I think he's already had a warmer reception than his predecessor.
  • On a previous Sooner foe matter, UCLA fired Karl Dorrell. Frankly, I thought this was a four years too late. Punting to Antonio Perkins after he already had two punt returns for TDs and over 200 return yards, UCLA punts to him again. Result, another NCAA record for a Sooner wearing #28.
  • The Great Pirate is considered a candidate for the UCLA job. This would be a great hire for UCLA, but I'd be sad to see Coach Leach leave the Big 12.
  • Miracle of miracles - Tommy Bowden was extended and given a raise at Clemson. They complain about him every year.
  • Charlie Weis drove down to Gainesville and assaulted Florida DE Jermaine Cunningham for wasting a perfectly good sandwich.

Harris Poll oddities

I found an interesting spot that lists the collegiate affiliation of the Harris poll votes. Interesting to me, at least. Some observation of some of the interesting votes and their affiliation.

  • Dr. Charles Johnson is affiliated with New Mexico State. Doc has Mizzou 6th, OU 9th and the 4-7 Pitt Panthers as 25.
  • Lance McElhenny, former SMU QB, lists Hawaii as #2, and doesn't have Texas in the top 25.
  • Craig Morton, former Cal QB who had a bit of sucess with the Cowboys and Broncos, voted the LSU Tigers 11th. A little bit bitter about that Super Bowl XII loss in nearby New Orleans, methinks.
  • Dr. Terry Schmidt, affiliated with Ball State, and Paul Schneider, affiliated with Boise State, voted the LSU Tigers 10th.
  • Bob Socci (Navy) voted Georgia 1st and Oklahoma 8th.

Overall, less blatant homerism or vengeance filled than the Coaches poll, in my opinion.

Big 12 Predictions Reviewed

Well, I decided to look at my predictions from earlier in the year. The Yahoo! college pick 'em didn't work out well for me, either; there's a reason I'm an accountant and not a prognosticator.

Original predictions are at and

disclaimer: trying google docs and posting; this could be ugly...

Big 12 north



Upon further review

NebraskaMissouriI expected the jrs and srs at Nebraska to carry the team. Apparently the Huskers did, too, as they fired Callahan. Also, the curse of Warren Powers appears to have been lifted.
ColoradoKansasI was close on this one, but not really. I had considered slots 2-5 interchangeable, and the gap between 2 and 3-5 in the North was huge.
KansasColoradoColorado was really inconsistent this year; upsetting the Sooners and shutting down Tech, then losing to Kansas State and Iowa State.
MissouriKansas StateI was a wee bit off on the Tigers. Hats off to them.
Kansas StateNebraskaI don't think anyone saw the Husker collapse coming.
Iowa StateIowa StateI know a cellar dwellar when I see it. They actually did better than I thought they would.
Big 12 South
PredictionActualUpon further review
Travis County JailOklahomaTwo things make the difference here: a) underestimated the o-line losses by the 'horns; and b) Sam Bradford rarely played like a freshman.
OklahomaTravis County Jailsee above.
Boone StateTieI used an excel function to predict 3-5, as I saw the teams as interchangeable. So I got that going for me, which is nice.
Dust PiratesTiesee above.
Cash Machine UTiesee above.
BaylorBaylorI know a cellar dwellar when I see it.

Brief WVU thought

I did some quick analysis of the Mountain Ears. WVU has the 7th ranked defense (points per game) in the country. IMO, that's a little misleading...the best offense they've faced is Cincinnati (14th), then South Florida checks in at 20 and Louisville checks in at 21.

Alternatively, the Sooners are 9th in scoring defense, but played #6 TxTech, #7 Mizzou twice, #10 Tulsa and #19 Texas.

Stats aside, I think this will be a good game. Slaton and White are fun to watch, and it'll be a good challenge for the Sooner D. According to Sagarin's predictor ratings, the Sooners should be around a 3 point favorite. Since the Sooners are followed around by some mad oil and native american casino money, it wouldn't surprise me to see the Sooners as a 5-7 pt favorite.

USA Today Coaches Poll analysis

Some interesting things come out of the USA Today/Coaches poll…

  • Oregon coach Mike Belotti voted the Sooners 8th. Missouri, whose two losses were to the Sooners, was ranked 5th.
  • Clemson coach Terry Bowden tanked the Sooners 10th, four spots behind Missouri. He’s the only coach to not include the Sooners in the top 8.
  • Florida State coach Bobby Bowden has the Sooners 7th, behind 5th place Missouri and 6th place Kansas.
  • Louisville (and former Tulsa) coach Steve Kragthorpe voted the Sooners 8th. He at least had the good sense to vote Mizzou 9th.
  • Boise State coach Chris Peterson voted the Sooners 7th. He’s apparently not a fan of the Big 12, as he voted Mizzou 9th and Kansas 10th.
  • FAU coach Howard Schnellenberger voted the Sooners 7th and the Missouri Tigers 4th. Howie has a unique perspective on the college football landscape…he ranked Boise State 10th and Southern Cal 12th. He’s the only coach to not have the Trojans in the top 10. Given that the University of Washington nearly beat his 3rd ranked team, Hawaii, and beat Boise State, I’m stunned he doesn’t have the Huskies in the top 10.
  • Landthieves would like to give a shout out to South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier for the #1 vote.
  • It wouldn’t be fair if I didn’t mention Head Visor Bob Stoops voted the Sooners 1 and the LSU Tigers 6th.
  • LSU/almost Michigan coach Les Miles voted Georgia 3, Va Tech 4, and Oklahoma 5, so it doesn’t look like he did much maneuvering, other than voting LSU #1.

    I’m not foolish enough to believe that this would alter the final standings - I had mentioned earlier in the month that if a two loss team got in the championship game, that LSU would likely have the strongest resume of that group - it would have been much easier just to beat Colorado or Texas Tech, but apparently that wasn’t as easy as one would have hoped.

The Harris Poll has some interesting data points as well, but there's only so much one can do on their lunch hour.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Sooners Luck their way to 21 point victory

The Sooners dominated the Missouri Tigers last evening in the second half, outscoring Missouri 24-3 after halftime...The Sooners started the second half with a three and out then scored on every possession thereafter, until running out the last 1:47 in the game. Oklahoma used a power running game and alternated Allen Patrick and Chris Browne. Brown, who doesn't seem to display much big play capability, does a great job of making the short yardage runs needed to keep the chains moving...the Sooners were 9-14 on third downs...the Tigers were 5-10 on first downs in the first half and 1-5 in the second half...time of possesion was dominated by the Sooners in the second half, as the Tigers only had the ball for five minutes in the final 22:30...DJ Wolfe and Curtis Lofton stood out defensively, as the Tiger ball carriers kept running into them...Jeremy Beal also played another great game, with six tackles and two tackles for losses. Offensively, Bradford was exceptional, going 18-26 with two TDs and no picks.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Another Interesting Stat for the day

3rd Down Conversion percentage, offense:
  • Tigers are 95/174 or 54.6% (2nd in nation)
  • Sooners are 80/159 50.3% (6th in nation).

3rd Down conversion percentage, defense

  • Sooners are 59/183 or 32.2% (13th)
  • Tigers are 82/194 or 42.3% (85th)

In the October game:

  • the Sooners were 10/14 on third down, punting three times and kicking one field goal. The Sooners lost two fumbles (one on a kickoff return).
  • the Tigers were 9/16 on third down, punting four times, converting on fourth down once, and throwing two interceptions on third down passes (one on a reverse pass by Jeremy Maclin). Mizzou also had two other turnovers, and a drive to end the first half that concluded with a field goal.

All this to say I expect a Sooner W today, as a result of a better Sooner defense. Should be a fun game.