ACC mid Season Awards:
Coach of the Year: Jim Grobe!
No starting QB? No problem. No 1st-string RB, son of a former NFL’er?
No problem. This Wake Forest football team is one play away from being perfect.
They will prolly be beaten more than once from here on out. But so far this one
is “Tooooo easy!” And the Grobes might wanna hope the Winston-Salem area is
a sellers market this Spring.
Player of the Year: Not an easy choice (sorry Cal Johnson), but I’ll go
with James Davis, Clemson RB. JD has the biggest lead statistically of anyone I’m
looking at. JD may only have two 100 yard games, but he has not been held below
87, and has only topped 20 carries twice. Meaning he should be ready to rock and
roll the second-half of 2006, i.e. well rested
Team of the Year: Clemson Tigers. Period. End of story. Full stop.
Clemson is the most complete ACC football team by far, in an otherwise
Biggest Disappointment: ‘nother tough one. Could be us/VT, as we do
have 6-0 talent, could be UNC or France falling apart. But I’ll take a Johnny
Dangerously approach and choose Miami of Florida. Just like Danny Vermin’s
bullets, the Canes disappoint themselves, the ACC, the Nation, the trees
outside, and their victims.
Newcomer of the Year: Quick, who is leading the ACC in yards per carry? I’ll
give you a hint; he’s not a senior, junior, or sophomore. But he is Clemson’s
C.J. Spiller. Pretty amazing that in our “There is a me in team!”
contemporary society, that James Davis actually helped recruit this guy. As C.J.
might just be better before it’s all said and done.
Boston College+4 @ Florida State O/U=42.5: (10.21, Saturday 3:30pm,
- BC strengths: Momentum, Turnover Margin, Passing Offense, Rushing Defense.
- BC weaknesses: Pass Defense, Rushing Offense, Punt Returns.
- FSU strengths: 11th best in Run Defense, TFL, Passing attack.
FSU weaknesses: Run Offense, 92nd in Turnover Margin, Kickoff Returns,
Both ACC Florida schools are slowly getting better. Florida State was a
little better than Miami to begin with, and has also improved a little more on
the year. Antone Smith and ‘Zo Booker are finally starting to run just a
little bit for FSU, Drew Weatherford is finally starting to play up to his
potential, and the Seminole defense is still rock solid. 51 Seminole points
scored last week on the 44th ranked defense is not a bad day at the office. BC
on the other hand is coming off of an EPIC national TV home win, and therefore
jus’ has the look and feel of a team about to let down to me. Weatherford will
stretch the Flying-Eagles defense, Smith and Booker will run outside those 340
interior BC heavies. This one will be very TV friendly, as both QB can throw
that ball. But FSU has six games left, five of which are in Tallahassee, and
this ‘Nole football team should come very close to winning out.
Probability of upset=37%
N.C. State @ Maryland O/U=42.5: (10.21, Saturday 12:30pm, ESPN+)
- NCS strengths: Kickoff Returns, attacking Defense, Pass Defense
- .NCS weaknesses: 112th in Turnover Margin, 94th in Total Offense, Punt
MU strengths: 1st best in Penalties, won’t quit, heavy Offensive-Line,
- MU weaknesses: Rushing Defense, 106th in Turnover margin, Defensive TFL/Sacks.
“I’ll tell yah, they’ll ding and dong yah. Lattimore and Ball.” “Running
back by Committee, they’ll Terpal-threat yah!” –ESPN360 color-commentator
Sonny Randel. Yah, Sonny, anything you say, including the Terp’s FB being
“…tougher than a 2 dollar steak.” Maryland is a C+++ girl, in an empty bar
good looking 4-2 on the year, but when you consider that the Terps are actually
triple-digit ranked in run-defense, and in turnover margin, yah gotta ask:
how??? I’ll tell yah how. The big-boy gets these kids to play a full 60
minutes full-freakin’ tilt. I commented on how MU did not quit up at wvu, and
jus’ kept scraping right along. Don’t believe me? Jus’ ask france if
Maryland knows how to quit.
N.C.State reminds me of my only favorite girl-band: -Enigma-. Because that is
exactly what Coach Chesty’s crew is: an enigma. A football team wrapped up
inside a riddle, inside a mystery, inside Elton John’s sunglasses, with a 380
bench. The 1950’s cold-war Russia of the ACC if you will. Coach Chesty’s
team should go 4-2 to close on 2006. They may go anywhere between 1-5 to 5-1. No
one knows for sure? But I do know when in doubt, take the team that will not
quit, at home, with the better punt-game. That would be the Terps.
Probability of upset=45%
Miami-20.5 @ Duke O/U=41: (10.21, Saturday 1pm, ESPN360)
- Miami strengths: 3rd in Run Defense, 6th in Total Defense, Punting, Turnover
- Miami weaknesses: Plenty of UFC ready Talent here folks. : (
- Duke strengths: Kickoff Returns, TFL, Rushing Defense.
Duke weaknesses: Scheduling, 2nd from last in Offense, worst ACC
Duke is on the verge of collapsing from pigskin exhaustion after running the
college football equivalency of the Idiatrod. ‘Bama, Florida State, now Miami.
Yikes! That’s asking a lot of even Texas, much less the always short on
non-hoops depth Duke. Miami on the other hand had barely avoided a 7-7
first-half of play at Home vs. the o for 2006 Florida International Panthers
last week before turning things around in the final 30 minutes of play. Turning
things Mask the movie ugly, that was the sickest, worst most violent Bench-Clearer I’ve
ever witnessed. That was so severe the announcers were trying to help find the
Chief of Police! And CSTV should fire the announcer who cheered the ‘Canes to
their Outsiders the movie rumble scene throw-down. Dude cheered and egged his
‘Canes to fight on during the mêlée. (Editors note: Lamar Thomas was fired
on Monday.) Oh well. Looks like Miami has rediscovered the ‘tude I said they
were missing last week. But in ALL the wrong ways. : (
So how ’bout this for a fresh idea: both the Florida International and
Miami of Florida A.D.’s should caucus and borrow a page from Boxing outcomes.
Mutually agree to call this one a “No Contest.” Because there just are no
winners on a night like that. But Duke is about to get routed! You may book
Probability of an upset= -0.0%
Georgia Tech+9 @ Clemson O/U=47.5: (10.21, Saturday 7:45pm, ESPN)
- GT strengths: Turnover Margin, Rushing Offense, Rushing Defense,
- GT weaknesses: Kickoff Returns, Reggie Ball due to implode?
- CU strengths: Rushing Offense, Rushing Defense, Turnover Margin, 3rd Down
- CU weaknesses: Health, and that’s it.
Georgia Tech has had 13 days off to the Clemson Tigers’ 8. So once again
the sporting world provides us with the classical athletic paradox of Rest vs.
Rust. In this case I chose to look at each team’s injury report. Georgia Tech
is a little dinged-up, whereas Clemson has four starters out for the year.
Advantage to the Rambling-Wreck’s rest. This is one of two games that could
cost GT the Coastal Division’s bid to play in JAX in the ACC Title Tilt (Miami
being the other). Clemson is the more complete team here folks, most complete in
the ACC for that matter. But how long can the Tigers roll the injury dice before
they crap-out? Somehow, someway, I just like Reggie Ball to win on the road in
Death Valley. GT by a full play or less, as the Yellow-Jackets are better on
Special-Teams, better in Turnover Margin, and on the Trainers Table.
Probability of an upset=40%
North Carolina+6 @ Virginia O/U=42: (10.19, Thursday 7:45pm, ESPN)
- UNC strengths: decent enough running game, Punt-game.
- UNC weaknesses: 5th worst Total Defense, 4th worst Turnover Margin, ’nuff
- UVA strengths: 37th in Total Defense, Defensive TFL/Sacks, Kickoff Returns.
- UVA weaknesses: Scott Stadium lighting, uniforms, 2nd half effort level, 3rd
I watched UNC play South Florida last week as best I could (in between wvu
timeouts). UNC is just not a good football team; in fact they are not even close
to being average. Sub 50% passing will do that to a football team, as will a
4:12 passing ratio (TD’s:INT’s) on the year. “He’d prolly run faster if
someone was chasing him.” (talking about snelling of uva). The ESPN360
announcer and former hoo Coach, Sonny Randel during the hoo Loss. Is this guy
the greatest football announcer ever or is he actually the Cop Clint Eastwood as
Philo Beddeo beat up in Every Which Way But Loose? I personally think he’s
both, but I am sure uva just came from ahead to choke, rallied to almost tie,
then came up just short; but guess what? There are some signs of life in paris
folks, and the 25th of November might just turn into a game after all. The hoo
defense is a very steady B+ quality stop-unit. snelling looks slimmer and
quicker to me, and he is still a powerhouse in space. And then there’s this…this
year’s Commonwealth Cup date will be to salvage france’s season. This is a
game of weak vs. weaker, bad vs. worse, down vs. ensconced on the bottom with a
shovel. Therefore, I’ll take france to come out on top.
Probability of an upset=30%
Southern Miss+13 @ Virginia Tech O/U=41.5: (10.19, Saturday 7pm,
- VT strengths: LB’s, Secondary, Ore, WR’s, 8th in Total Defense, Defensive
- VT weaknesses: Discipline, Penalties, interior FrontLines, current emotional
- So.Miss strengths: Coaching, Fletcher the RB, Turnover Margin, Sacks allowed.
- So.Miss weaknesses: RB depth, Discipline, Punt Returns, limited Passing
The biggest look-ahead, out of conference, trap-game, on
our 2006 schedule is here folks. The upset alert claxon is chiming as I type,
and James T. Kirk has gone to red-alert in space-dock; no word on Spock’s
eyebrow height as yet. This week we get to see if a mid-range defense can beat
us. What do I mean by that? Gah.Tech jus’ turned the trick with a Mad-Max all
out attacking Defense, then B.C. actually beat us by more points with a Barry
Goldwater, right of right, ultra conservative, keep everything short and in
front of you Defense. So.Miss is neither of those. They attack a little bit,
they sag into Zone a little bit. The key here jus’ might have been the Houston
Cougar game that So.Miss jus’ won. Had So.Miss been beaten I would call for
us/VT to win. If this game were in Hattiesburg I would be picking the Golden
Eagles no matter what. This is a 20-17 kinda game, I’ll keep checking with Q,
M, and all the oo’s in my spy network to try to figure out which way by
Thursday or Friday. But don’t forget that So.Miss kinda sorta backed into a
break by suspending all-freshmen RB Damion Fletcher for the first-half last
week. My spy network had been reporting he was showing some signs of
wearing-down a bit, as he is only 5’10, a buck70. Leading Golden-Eagle WR Shaun
Nelson also sat the 1st 30 minutes of play. Finally So.Miss was helped out by
switching QB’s on an ankle tweak up at Tulsa. Some years are like that, some
you get the bull, and some years you get the horns.
Probability of an upset=40%