Tag Archives: 2014 college football season

He Came to Play School

“The NFL, after three [college] games, was really out of the question for me.”
–Cardale Jones at his press conference earlier today

Or was it? At first or even second glance, a quarterback declaring for the NFL draft after just three starts seems absurd. And for someone with two years of college eligibility remaining, as Jones has, it would be unprecedented. But quarterbacks with little playing time have been drafted and succeeded at the next level.

Matt Cassel had no choice but to leave USC in 2004; he had exhausted his four years of eligibility. Even though he’d spent his college career as a back-up, the Patriots drafted him in the seventh round. For all they knew at the time, Cassel could have been among the top quarterbacks in the country — after all, he backed up Heisman Trophy winners Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart. A strong pre-draft showing was enough for New England to take a chance on a player who hadn’t started a game since high school. While far from a star, Cassel has proved to be a solid NFL quarterback.

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Scoop and Score: National Championship Preview

Steve and I preview the Oregon-Ohio State national championship, and also talk about all the annoying commercials that have been playing during bowl season.

Scoop and Score: College Football Playoff Field

After weeks of meaningless (and misleading) rankings, the playoff field is official: Alabama vs. Ohio State in one semifinal and Oregon vs. Florida State in the other. As you may have heard, there was a bit of controversy surrounding Ohio State’s inclusion, and Steve and I spend time discussing that.

1:25 What was the point of weekly rankings?
5:45 The four teams we would have selected for the playoff
7:35 Sorting out the Big 12 mess
16:40 Ohio State’s case
25:05 Halftime: Analysis of football throwing competitions
27:45 What would have happened in BCS era? What is the impact of Vegas spreads? Who are truly the best teams in the country?
37:35 Should the playoff field be expanded?
42:45 Heisman debate: Mariota, Gordon, and other “candidates”
58:00 The committee’s influences watching GameDay
59:55 Recap of “locks,” pop culture discussion on “Lose Yourself” alternate version, Peter Pan
1:04:00 Shoutouts

I hope you’ll also take the time to vote in the poll below (email subscribers: you may need to view this post on the blog in order to vote).

College Football Championship Weekend Viewing Guide

Given the college football playoff committee’s rankings—undefeated Florida State is not first, or even second or third—many fans are confused. They may know which match-ups they’d like to see in the playoff but unsure what to root for this weekend to make their wishes come true. That’s where I come in, to save you from accidentally rooting for the wrong team. Because you screaming at your TV does make a difference.

Arizona vs. Oregon
Pac-12 Championship
Friday, 9 p.m. ET, FOX

The Ducks have been among college football’s best in recent years—the last season they lost more than two games was 2009—but they’ve only been to one national championship. In a time when other schools are claiming national titles like they’re candy on Halloween, Oregon, which started football in 1894, claims none. My point is, they’ve worked hard their whole life, paid their dues, and now, maybe, it’s Oregon’s turn. Win, and the Ducks are in the playoff, with a 1 or 2 seed and a semifinal game at the Rose Bowl.

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Scoop and Score: Championship Week

Steve and I talk about the final “meaningless” rankings: How in the heck is Florida State No. 4? Which teams are still alive for a playoff spot? How will championship week play out? The podcast is packed with everything you’ll want to know before this weekend’s games. If you mention the show on Twitter or Facebook, or send me a question or comment via email, you’ll get a special shoutout on the next podcast.

I also want to share a couple of college basketball stories I’ve written. One is a feature on Manhattan coach Steve Masiello, which was published in the latest issue of Basketball Times. You probably remember his name from the résumé scandal last spring. I spoke to Masiello, his current and former players, several of the school’s administrators, and others outside of the program who are familiar with the situation to get an idea of how Manhattan went about taking him back and what it means for the school. The other story is much shorter, though it deals with tall players: Kentucky’s basketball team, which may be the tallest in college hoops history and can match up with any NBA team. It appeared in The Wall Street Journal last week.

You can find most all of my freelance work on my website. As always, thanks so much for reading. Without you, I’d simply be a diarist.

Scoop and Score: Week 12 Recap

Steve and I recap Saturday’s big games, including Mississippi State’s first loss, Melvin Gordon’s huge day (and pro potential), and the effectiveness of icing the kicker. Smokey, Tennessee’s mascot, is also discussed.

Tomorrow, be on the lookout for a college basketball podcast in which my guests and I discuss last night’s Champions Classic and make our predictions for the season. It should be a fun and informative listen. Speaking of college hoops, I wrote a story yesterday for CBS Local on Kentucky’s chances of an undefeated season and whether they could beat an NBA team. My sources include coaches who have worked at both the college and pro levels.

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Scoop and Score: Dave Revsine

Dave Revsine from the Big Ten Network joins Steve and me to give a brief history of the network and its role in shaping college athletics, Ohio State’s playoff chances, the best rivalries, and, pulling from his book The Opening Kickoff: The Tumultuous Birth of a Football Nation, what the game’s past might tell us about its future. Steve and Dave share some laughs over their athletic “careers” in Dublin, and Steve and I preview Saturday’s biggest games.