Thursday Skull Session

By Jeremy Birmingham on February 16, 2012 at 6:00a
115 Comments

Good morning friends and enemies, I hope that your day is off to a splendid start.

We're two days until the weekend, and while the weekend is significantly better when there's college football on the horizon, it's still pretty good when there's not.

What's on your agenda for this weekend? 

DEREK DUH-LEY. Oversigning, one of college football's buzz-words in recent years, is always a hot-topic. The practice, which essentially amounts to signing more players than you have scholarships available, and then forcing transfers, fabricating medical hardships, etc, is controversial for a lot of reasons. 

Oversigning has "blown up" in the past four or five years, mostly due to the SEC's brazen coaches who have taken the business of the college game to a whole new level. Nick Saban, Les Miles, Gene Chizik, Houston Nutt and more have been outspoken advocates of the practice. Saban, quoted as saying "It's none of your business. Aiight? And don't give me this stuff about the fans need to know, because they don't need to know", has become the poster child for it today, but Tennessee's Derek Dooley threw his hat into the ring to take over the throne whenever Saban bolts for a position in the CFL or something.

The Boy Who Would Be King, the son of a coaching legend (Georgia's Vince Dooley), went on the record on Tuesday to lay verbal waste to the SEC's recent attempts to curb oversigning (note: not eliminate it, if you have 18 scholarships open, you can still sign 25 players) and his diarrhea of the mouth reeks of arrogance and overall "not-getting-it-ness".  

In this article, Dooley waxes poetic about how oversigning is "good for the student-athlete" and that it's been "healthy for college football", which is laughable at best and flat out ridiculous at worst. Yes, the SEC, with it's lax policies about oversigning has benefited beyond comparison, but the rest of college football has fallen behind as they bring in 4 players for every 5 the SEC's biggest offenders do. Is that the only reason the SEC has won six straight BCS national titles? No, certainly not - but it does give a considerable leg up on your competition.

Of course, for Dooley and the decaying Volunteer program, it might not matter that much. He only signed 21 players two weeks ago, and brought in the SEC's 10th-ranked class, according to Scout.com. Guess it's no wonder why he feels the need to vent, but I doubt Dooley will be able to oversign in his next job outside of the SEC.

LAQUINTON ROSS IS LAFRUSTRATED, BOSS. Following Ohio State's ten point Valentine's Day win in Minnesota against the Gophers, one of the Buckeyes youngsters experienced what can only be described as a "teachable moment" when he went straight to his iPhone to vent his frustrations about his lack of playing time. 

Ross, who did not play in the Twin Cities win, has logged a total of 26 minutes this season in six games, was expected to provide the Buckeyes an offensive spark off the bench this year after he was cleared to join the team in early December. As of yet, that has not happened, and it's clearly beginning to wear on the freshman, who was the highest-ranked player in the Buckeye's celebrated freshman class. 

Kids say the darndest things

It's easy to understand Ross' frustration, as most Buckeye fans have been calling for a commitment to use the Buckeyes depth for years, and as the offense continues to struggle to find a consistent outside threat, Ross' skill-set could fill that dire need. Unfortunately for him, missing those first two months of practice has put LQR in the unenviable position of trailing the other freshman in nearly every facet of the game, save for natural scoring ability.

The Big Ten is a physical league, and a league that requires contributors to do multiple things. One dimensional players will rarely succeed, and players who are adverse to defense and banging for rebounds will succeed even less. 

Ross has not shot well in his limited opportunities (20% from the floor), and for a player whose scouting report lists scoring ability as his biggest asset, that's a problem. Worse than his lackluster offensive numbers are that he has a total of three defensive rebounds, zero assists, zero steals and two turnovers in what has largely been garbage minutes. Those minutes are a time for the youngsters to get on the floor and show their passion, their energy, their desire to be on the floor when it counts. 

I desperately want more playing time for the Buckeyes bench, but if Ross can't perform in "game over" situations, I don't blame Matta for not trusting him when things matter.

THE GAME: HARDWOOD EDITION, PART DEUX. Three weeks ago, the Buckeye basketball team hosted TTUN in a game that was, to put it mildly, ugly. Lenzelle Smith was the catalyst as Ohio State won by 15, but it was hardly a work of art. The teams combined for 11-40 from beyond the arc, and Ohio State's "BMOC" was limited by foul trouble, but Michigan's inability to take advantage inside kept the Buckeyes out in front comfortably when the clock struck 00:00. 

That was three weeks ago, and that win was the fourth of what would become six straight B1G wins for the Buckeyes, propelling them into first-place in the standings, where they stood until last Saturday's really ugly loss at home to MSU. Now the Buckeyes sit a half-game ahead of Sparty, and a full game ahead of the Wolverines as they head into Saturday's big-time matchup in Ann Arbor.

What has to happen for the Buckeyes to pull out a win in Crisler Center, where UM is undefeated this season?

In my non-expert opinion, it's a matter of three crucial things: 1) Keeping key guys like Sully, Thomas and Craft on the floor, out of foul trouble. 2) Buford being involved (and scoring) in the offensive flow early, forcing UM to leave Sully in one-on-one situations. Otherwise known as getting "Good Buford". 3) Craft keep Trey Burke from getting going early, and putting pressure on him by forcing the offense into the lane.

Michigan's offense is predicated on the perimeter  game, and that's bad news for a Buckeye team that struggles to consistently defend outside shooters. The Buckeyes will need another big effort from a "fifth", similar to what Lenzelle Smith did in the first meeting, when he went for 17 points and 12 rebounds and provided non-stop energy and pace. 

Either way, we're in for a typical B1G brawl, I suspect. The game is on Saturday night at 9pm, and will be televised on ESPN.

WOODARD: BUCKEYE BOUND TODAY? Voorhees, New Jersey cornerback Eli Woodard is set to announce today, via twitter, where he will be matriculating after his prep career concludes. He's made no bones for quite some time that Ohio State was at or near the top of his list, and today should probably cement that opinion. Woodard is a 6'1", 185 cornerback who is fast, physical and versatile. He's played quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back, but is going to be a cornerback at the next level. 

It doesn't take long if you watch his tape to see the high-end athleticism that Woodard will bring to Columbus. If he's half as productive as the last cornerback from New Jersey to make his way to Columbus, then Buckeye fans are going to be in for a real treat.

 QUICK SLANTS. Well, if this doesn't make your Rocky Top eyes tear up, nothing will.... One of the good guys of sports struggling with health issues.... The Horned Bongs make their entry into the Fulmer Cup... A history of the popular video game mascots.... ESPN removes the best part of their MNF broadcasts.

115 Comments

Comments

The Vest-er's picture

The "first" police are in your driveway.

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

AcrossTheField11's picture

hmmmm.

Time and change will surely show how firm they friendship... O-HI-O.

RBuck's picture

Just a FYI. When someone did the "first" thing not very long ago, Jason told him to take that stuff somewhere else. Yes, The Jason.

"It's just another case of there you are". ~ Doc (1918-2012)

Doc's picture

Excuse my lack of interwebs savvy, but what is the "first" thing?

"Say my name."

cronimi's picture

Certain people take extreme pride in being the first to make a comment to a blog post, even if the comment is solely to note he/she happened to be the first to submit a comment. The purpose behind such comments ... I do not know. Maybe they think it's akin to being the first in line at the box office and they somehow will get the best seat at the blog.

Squirrel Master's picture

I think it is kind of funny but should require some insight along with it to show you actually read the material instead of just trying to comment first. It should be pride in being first to read the post, not pride in first commenting. Maybe some humility as well, "wow, I am the first today!"

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

Doc's picture

Thanks guys.  In my experience I have noticed that my posts are usually the last post :P.  I try to make a contribution to the conversation and not get my posts numbers up.  Most of the time failing at both.  Thanks for the clarification.

"Say my name."

William's picture

This isn't myspace, so let's cut this crap out.

SaintTressel's picture

Having three open scholarships in a semester hurts more kids' futures then oversigning by 2.

Also, Jaworski doesn't do it for me, but he had the year's best MNF moment--http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Daoz3rfRe1Q

Catch 5's picture

The dirty little secret is that you are right. Dooley has been slaughtered in the media and by oversigning critics over this, but noone has refuted his position. They may have parsed his words or demeaned his character, but the point you make is still lying there, and the wise see it. How is it better, at the end of the day if a team has scholarships that aren't used? Each one represents another kid who could have had the opportunity to play at Tennessee. Instead that player went to his second or third or fourth choice - or not at all. You may not like oversigning, you may not like Dooley, and you may not like UT but you can't deny that.

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

Jdadams01's picture

Normally, schools that "undersign" give those extra schollies to walkons who have worked hard. So no, generally it's not worse.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

That's a good point, but what actually happens to the money that had been committed to the unused schollies? These scholarships aren't really "free." If the money not used on a few fball schollies is utilized in other ways, then it's not necessarily "lost opportunities" for kids - maybe, but just don't know, would need to hear how the financing works, etc.

rdubs's picture

Many teams will then offer the upperclassmen who have worked hard and proven to be great team members as walkons.  I think that system is much better than oversigning by a couple and essentially having to break a promise that you made to two kids in order to get down to allowable roster size.  

Catch 5's picture

This point that you, Fido, and JD make is fine.  Giving unused scholarships to walk-ons is much better than having them go to waste, but it doesn't provide an opportunity to anyone new.  Walk-ons are already in school - though by their own dime (like most of us).  They don't need the assistance to get there, and as walk-ons don't have the ability required to earn one - or decided that playing for OSU at their own expense was worth more than any scholarship offer they did receive.  Point being that proper oversigning is a way to keep the scholarship roster full and maximize the opportunity provided by the football team. 

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

NC_Buckeye's picture

Blah, blah, blah. Give it up dude. Nobody's buying your spiel (except for bt... lol).

Catch 5's picture

Your well-thought and elequant dissertation sure showed me!

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

Buckeye06's picture

Ummm you could use the scholarship the next year...not that hard.

Squirrel Master's picture

I think your point is missing the point. It's OVERsigning and kicking kids off the team because they just are not as good as the 5 star that is coming in. Not talking about signing just the right amount or taking a few extras knowing there will be transfers. If a team undersigns on purpose or doesn't expect transfers then the lack of scholarship players is not good planning. I am sure in most cases the coaches know who is thinking about leaving by signing day.

I really don't have issue with oversigning when its a regime change or certain situations. Its when you do it every year over a 4-5 year stretch. Its just not right to sign a kid who is a 3 star to fill out your recruiting class, then next year or 2 if a 5 star comes in you find a way to release the 3 star from his scholarship. and that is what is going on and needs to stop.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

Catch 5's picture

I completly agree with your premise here.  If coaches are yanking scholarships from guys to make room for new recruits, they are wrong*.  The problem I have with your stance, however is how definitive you say it is going on.  If guys like Nick Saban are doing this by the bucketload every year, where are the testamonies from these guys?  If I had my scholarship taken away when I had been doing everything asked of me, I'd sure let someone know about it - and with the media frenzy feasting on Saban and his oversigning ways, you would think that there would be no shortage of complaints.  So, where are they?**  No, I think what is more often going on is coaches preparing for attrition that they know is going to happen, and maybe signing one or two extra (with the expectation of a greyshirt) who can still enroll in the fall if more attrition is expected.

*This applies to whether a team oversigned or not.  It should also be pointed out that it is against NCAA rules not to renew a scholarship on the basis of performance.

**Cite the WSJ article about medical hardships if you want, but despite the article saying three guys complained about it, they only provide quotes from one of them actually doing so (the quotes from the other two refute that claim) - and he also says that he agreed with the doctors and signed off on the medical.  So even if you think that counts, that's one guy out of how many that have been "cut"?

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

rdubs's picture

B1G are allowed to oversign if they certify to the conference why it is okay in their case (ie who and why people will be leaving).  And it is one thing if it is one or two every once in a while.  The difference is that LSU and Alabama have signed 126 and 137 (respectively) over the last 4 years.  Obviously that will change with the new SEC rule, but without this step in the right direction LSU and Alabama are cutting out 40-50 kids over 4 years.  If B1G coaches are smart enough to figure out how to manage their offers I think the SEC can catch on (Saban did used to coach at MSU).   

Maestro's picture

5 years RDUBS, not 4 years for those numbers.

vacuuming sucks

rdubs's picture

you're right but that does not take away from my overall point as it is still considerably more than anyone in the B1G and still results in the need to cut 20-30 players over that time.

Maestro's picture

Totally agree, just a point of clarification for accuracy-sake.

vacuuming sucks

VestedInterest's picture

B1G limits the number to three oversignees with petition also, not an unlimited number like others.

Catch 5's picture

Someone please explain to me the difference between oversigning and then losing 12 players over the summer and not oversigning but losing 10 players in January (with likely more over the summer).

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

Jdadams01's picture

Someone please tell me why you are still here when we had this argument a week ago and all you did was fall back on standard SEC excuses?

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Good catch. I used 11W's cool new(?) comment tracking system and it appears that Catch 5 is not a Buckeye fan, which is fine, but almost every single one of his comments has either been in defense of oversigning (by far, his favorite topic) or to attack Ohio State's reputation. Okay, he did make one comment about not wanting a playoff, or something. Wonder why he has such an interest in 11W.

BucksfanXC's picture

Hey now. Just because he isn't a Buckeye fan doesn't mean he has to leave or stay away from here. Please don't become the stereotype thug fanbase that everyone thinks we are. Be open and welcoming to differing viewpoints. Outside perspective from opposing fans is valuable. Discourse should be welcomed. If you don't agree with his (or her) viewpoints, debate. Don't attack him based solely upon the fact that he's not a Buckeye.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Hey now. How did I attack him? By pointing out the pattern of his comments?

I am very open to differing viewpoints. That's why I very explicitly remarked that it was just fine if he is not a Buckeye fan.

Reading comprehension tip: my point, which I thought I made pretty clear, is that he has only commented about oversigning and/or attacked Ohio State's repuation, which does not exactly represent "differing viewpoints" (he/she only seems to have one viewpoint on one topic) prompted me to ask, why take such an interest in 11W?

Asking someone, "What's your purpose here?" =/= "Get lost." 

BucksfanXC's picture

I didn't say you did. I just was trying to stop that slippery slope. I know you only pointed it out, but it could have been taken as a "hey guys, look a non-Buckeye, GET HIM!" and I don't want that to happen. I meant no offense to you Fido, I was just venting a little. I think we need more non-Buckeyes around here, because guys like M-Man, etc. make this a better place. I try to go to BSD, MGoBlog and represent Buckeye fans well, and I appreciate others who do the same. It was just my rant. Carry on.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

VestedInterest's picture

Nobody has a problem with posters who are up front about who they are a fan of, it's the one's who hide behind the screen like the one we're talking about here specifically that take heat, and rightly so imo. I suppose we can surmise he's a fan of team SEC, but that won't cut it.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

It's all good. Again, I totally agree with you about being open to differing viewpoints/camps. Not only does it enrich the discussions, but it's a matter of courtesy. But also agree with VestedInterest that it's courteous for the commenter to kinda say where he/she is coming from.

Jdadams01's picture

Agreed about posters from different fan bases having the potential to add a lot. Also agree that Fido didn't attack him for being a non-OSU fan. I really enjoy M-Man's perspective and addition to the group here and hope that Catch 5 can swing that direction. The constant over-signing arguments where he repeats the same blather as the previous week will get tiresome fast, though. Having the argument once is great: new perspective is always a good thing. But coming back a week later with it again? Come on.

Catch 5's picture

As Bucksfan points out below, I am a Bama fan.  College football is my favorite sport to follow, and I'm always in search of a good place for information and decided I would try to expand my horizons beyond the SEC this offseason.  I generally read the articles here without commenting (mostly because I am unfamiliar with the specifics at OSU) but I guess I have a passion about this oversigning topic because it has been warped into something that it is not, and it is being used in an attempt to lessen the accomplishments of teams like Alabama.  My efforts have not been meant as an attack on anyone - including OSU but rather an attempt to have you look at the attrition at OSU in the same light as you do that at Bama.  I see little difference between "cutting" players over the summer after oversigning, and "cutting" them in December and January so that you don't oversign.  In both instances room is made for new recruits, but only one of them is demonized.

I recognize that this is an OSU fan site, and I don't want to be the guy that barges into a party, drinks too much and throws up on your favorite rug.  I have a lot of respect for this program and have no desire to harm Ohio State's reputation (nor could I).  If my comments have been taken as an attack on your team, I sincerely apologize for that as they have not been meant as such.

And if I seem to be using the same arguments, it's because noone answered them adequately the first time.  Now, would anyone care to address my questioin or do we need to talk about me some more?

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

VestedInterest's picture

Glad we clarified the team allegience thing, sorry it's a peeve.

I think you're missing the whole "forest for the trees" thing here. The fact is that those that do oversign take 5 for every 4, that's clearly an advantage no matter how you slice it. You claim that it's good for recruits as they are just utilizing all available roster spots/scholarships...that's true only because not everyone oversigns and they have someplace to fall back on. If EVERYONE oversignged, there would be a lot of recruits with nowhere to go. I don't think that's the way the game should be played and I would MUCH rather the onus of the recruiting game be placed on recruiters and sign quality guys instead of just throwing a bunch of guys against the wall and seeing what sticks.

Maestro's picture

But don't you know that the onus being placed on the recruiters is hard Vested?  Just ask Dooley.  Poor, poor multi-millionaire Derek Dooley.........wah.

vacuuming sucks

VestedInterest's picture

Lol...yeah it's hard, atleast it should be. I just see oversigning as a damn cop out for not doing due diligence, and if everyone did it, it would absolutely suck for college football. I'm not saying it has everything to do with who has won the BCS as Saban is a great coach and a ton of elite players sign in the SEC anyway but it sure as shit doesn't hurt.

Catch 5's picture

"If EVERYONE oversignged, there would be a lot of recruits with nowhere to go"

I disagree here and I may be arguing semantics here, but the recruits have a place to go - to the school they signed with.  If everyone oversigned, there would be no room for existing players that are transferring - that is a valid argument, but once a recruit signs, he is guaranteed a scholarship (even though it may be with the next class, it is still guaranteed).  This argument would become true if everyone oversigned without taking into account any transfers they would acquire over the summer.  Then it would be a problem to the transfers who were wanting to go straight to another FBS school, but many prefer to spend a year in FCS before they return to FBS so that they can play that year. 

Yes, oversigning is a bit of an advantage.  So is having a 6'-4" DT that can push down a left tackle and then run down a QB from the backside.  Advantages are not my concern as long as they are fair and legal (which oversigning is) and isn't immoral.  Most people have applied the immoral tag to oversigning, which I find dishonest (usually not intentionally) since the immoral element (cutting kids) can be done without oversigning as exhibited by the example I posted using Urban last week.  "taking 5 for every 4" is interesting.  Consider the following:

Two teams from the same conference are compared.  Both teams are found to have signed an average of 20 players over the last 10 years without oversigning.  They also both lost an average of 4 players every year to attrition.  The coach of team A decides to begin oversigning to make up for this attrition and begins signing 25 players every year.  After 10 more years, team A has signed 250 players where Team B has only signed 200.  Team B once again averaged 4 players lost to attrition every year while Team A averaged 5 players lost every year.  My question is:  Is the coach from Team A cutting his players or is he simply suffering the same 20% attrition Team B is? 

That, to me is what oversigning really is.

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

Bucksfan's picture

Catch5, there are only a few possibilities for a student to leave a program.  1) He's cut from the team, 2) Academically no longer qualifies, 3) Medical hardship, 4) Dissatisfied with playing time and leaves.

If what you say is true about needing to replace players that leave, then Miles/Saban don't have the same retention rates as other high-profile programs.  This can only be due to a few things: If they're cutting what turns out to be dead weight, that's immoral.  If they're bringing in kids that shouldn't be in college, either academically or developmentally, that's definitely shady.  If they're losing that many players due to medical problems, then something is wrong with their training programs.  If the kids are dissatisfied with their playing time, then what we have is a feed-forward system of talent hoarding that you can blame on attrition, but in reality is a way to obtain an extra recruiting class every year.  In that case, it's a chicken-or-the-egg argument.  Did the kids leave, therefore I have to oversign?  Or do I oversign because I expect there to be kids leaving because I do not run a program dedicated to making sure these athletes stay and get a degree?

Obviously the reality is a combination of all of these.  But to have a retention rate low enough to need an extra recruiting class every 5 years, then there's some sort of failure on the part of the institution/football program in its dedication to the students.

Maestro's picture

Single biggest indicator of bowl victories in 2011-12.....the team that signed more players over the past 5 seasons.  Just sayin'

vacuuming sucks

ArTbkward's picture

What you said certainly didn't come across as an attack to me, and was a pretty good comment imo. 

I think Fido is one of the best commenters on this site day in and day out.  I think (s)he spends more time here than even I do, which is saying something.  I don't always agree but I can't remember any comment (s)he's made that wasn't well written and rationally reasoned.

Also, that comment tracking thing isn't new.

We should strive to keep thy name, of fair repute and spotless fame...
(Also, I'm not a dude)

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Thanks for the kind words. And I can honestly say (not just trying to return a compliment) that your comments are often insightful and interesting. That's partly what brings me to 11W - the quality of the commentariat here, i.e. the "11W community" - but, you're also right, I should get back to work (every once in a while).

ArTbkward's picture

*aw, shucks*

I agree that the quality of the commentary here is partially what draws me to this site.  I can't read comments on ESPN, CBS type articles because they typically make my blood boil,  Also, it's best to not have to explain why I'm pounding the keyboard at work. 

The community here is great, I'm looking forward to meeting some of you all at E3B this year especially after hearing about the success E2B.

We should strive to keep thy name, of fair repute and spotless fame...
(Also, I'm not a dude)

funky123's picture

Posting on CBS Sports isn't for the faint of heart that is for sure. But it can be fun if you don't let it get under your skin.

Then you have hacks like Doyel and Dodd bashing OSU every chance they get.

I have nothing to do with ESPiN. The sporting world would be better off without it.

Bucksfan's picture

Catch 5 is an Alabama fan.  If Nick Saban said the sky was purple, this guy would probably defend it until he ran out of voice.

Squirrel Master's picture

choot im!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

funky123's picture

Nick Satin would kick his own mother off the team to get her scholarship if she had one.

PharmBuck's picture

Because you are not "losing" players. They are being forced out.

"You're pissed because we went after a committed guy? Guess what, we got 9 guys who better go do it again," said Meyer. "Do it a little harder next time."

Catch 5's picture

OK, what's the difference between oversigning and then forcing out 12 players over the summer and not oversigning but forcing out 10 players in January?

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

rdubs's picture

Frankly not much, and in someways just focusing on oversigning obfuscates another glaring issue.  Why does Alabama sign 137 players in a 5 year period?  Why do they get to choose their 85 out of so many when teams in the B1G are in the 80s?  That is where your competitive advantage comes in.  The SEC has rectified this issue somewhat, but why is the SEC cutting so many players in either January or August?  A team should never need cut 10-15 per year, but if you sign 130+ you really have no choice.

Maestro's picture

You are way too focused on numbers RDubs.........wink.

vacuuming sucks

German Buckeye's picture

My agenda this weekend is to cheer/watch my son wrestle in the European High School championships (the DoDs equivalent of "state").  He's representing Heidelberg HS in the 195lb class - 22-3 on the season.  Fingers crossed! 

The Vest-er's picture

Good luck!

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

Denny's picture

The Philsophenweg in Heidelberg is one of my favorite places on the planet. I stayed in Karlsruhe studying in a lab there for a week and a half and took the train to Heidelberg on a suggestion. As I was walking up to the walk, I came across an American Boy Scout troop that was walking up as well (they were stationed in Mannheim). I joined them on the walk up, as I was rather lonely having been in a hotel room by myself for a few days.

That walk up with a few familiar voices did a lot to cheer me up -- and then I got the view of the old city from up above the river. It's stunning up there.

(Also, good luck to your son.)

Taquitos.

German Buckeye's picture

100% agree.  Nothing better than looking over at the Heidelberg Castle, Old Town and the Old Bridge - old world charm at its best.  Too bad USAREUR (US Army Europe) is moving to Wiesbaden this summer - Heidelberg is a great place to live. 

NYC Buckeye's picture

Yep, been to Heildelberg 5 or 6 times, love the view from the cafe's along the river, of those nice houses on the other side...  

My girlfriend is from St.Leon-Rot, many of the locals are actually upset they are shutting down the Base, as it is going to hurt the local economy...

jfunk's picture

Tell him to take it easy on my Ansbach Cougars. I'll be down at Carnivale in Venice so I won't get to catch the match.

Scotch: It may be too early to drink it, yes; but people it is never to early to think about it.

German Buckeye's picture

Ansbach's heavy weight (between 225-285) upset the favorite last weekend (Vilsek) in sectionals, so they have some game!

LadyBuck's picture

Good luck to him! Hope he does well.

The Vest-er's picture

I will most likely be in an emergency room. Going skiing for the first time in 16 years. I'll have the bucks game on in the recovery room

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

Doc's picture

My plans this weekend include seeing The Mighty VAN HALEN open up their tour in Louisville on Saturday night, and following that up with night number 2 in Detwat on Monday.  Diamond David Lee Roth is back on the mic and Eddie is tearing it up once again! =VH=

"Say my name."

bukyze's picture

Thanks for the info, Doc.  I had no idea they were going to be in Louisville this weekend - may head on down.  I'll be at the Umphreys McGee show at the LC in Cbus tomorrow night.

Doc's picture

Should be a blast!  The new album kicks ass and is old school VH.  No more sappy ballads.

"Say my name."

Squirrel Master's picture

Hey Doc! I live in St. Matthews. Wish I had tickets but can't make it. Rock Hard!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

Doc's picture

I will!

"Say my name."

bukyze's picture

Hopefully they'll play a few of the demos from '76 that never made it onto VH I  or VH II.  Within bootleg circles, those songs are known as VH 0 (zero).

Doc's picture

A lot of those demos have been retooled and have made it onto the new disc.  She's The Woman and Bullethead have the same titles but different lyrics.  Big Trouble , Put Out The Lights and Let's Get Rockin have new lyrics and new titles.  The abulm is called "A Different Kind of Truth" and it was released last Tuesday the 7th.  It debuts as the #2 album in the country.  Not bad for a group that hasn't put out an album together since 1984.

"Say my name."

jfrank373's picture

LQR needs to chill. It would be nice to see him play more, but who's spot does he take to get more minutes? If there's anybody who has a gripe it's Sam Thompson a.k.a. The Human Highlight Reel who does nothing but shine every time he's on the floor.

Come on LQR, get your grades right, do the things you need to do in order to be a college basketball player and quit your bitching. The coaches didn't say "I don't know how much of this bull s*** I can take" when you couldn't get eligable in time for fall practices.

Jdadams01's picture

This. Kid has had 26 minutes of playing time to show he deserves more and he hasn't done anything impressive. So why should Matta throw him a bone of any kind? Couldn't get eligible and then isn't performing.

tampa buckeye's picture

Two things. If LQR wasnt pissed about sitting on the bench something would be wrong.
Also how do you expect him to get better if he does not get p.t?
Now i could give two shits about twitter i think anyone that follows that shit has too much time on their hands....ie the root of the problem the kid has too much time sitting on the bench with thumb firmly inserted in ass.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

The coaches didn't say "I don't know how much of this bull s*** I can take" when you couldn't get eligable in time for fall practices.

LMAO! Your comment, of course, makes me think of other similar examples of people saying, "I don't know how much more of this b.s. I can take" . . .

  • JT, after reading the Cicero email
  • Braxton Miller, after getting the play-call in from the Walrus
  • Me, watching a game being "officiated" by B1G bball refs
  • Urbz, having to listen to Bielema whine

 

jfrank373's picture

HAHA Love the part about Braxton. He seriously had to think that when they're running Dave on 3rd and 24.

Doc's picture

Sam is getting hosed.  I watched the Minnie game and he was very good.  He needs to get in the flow more.  Dude has springs in his legs and plays hard.

"Say my name."

awwwwwwop's picture

I love the way he plays, but he is a liability on the offensive side of the ball.  When Thomas and Sully are in, he makes three people that want to play around the basket, not really what we need.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Squirrel Master's picture

Thompson i think is better on defense than Buford is because of his length but I agree, outside of dunking he is a liability on offense. Amir should have the most beef. He should be starting at center with Sully at the 4. It just makes too much sense.

I think the bench absolutely needs to be utilized more. Thompson and Thomas should both be the first off the bench with Craft,Smith,Buford,Sully and Williams starting. Then Ravanel, Scott and Weatherspoon. Last should be Sibert, Ross and Mcdonald. Ross just needs to by his time for next year. No NBA team will take him even if he ends up starting this year and just transferring will delay his forward progress. Going to have to suck it up!

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

awwwwwwop's picture

It would be great to have Williams starting, but imagne what the offense would look like with only Buford and Sully as the scoring threats.  As much as it sucks, this team is not poorly constructed.  It needs the one piece it doesnt have, a shooter who can play defense.  I know that isnt easy to come by, but when you 3 offensive liabilities (Craft, Smith Jr., and Williams) teams are going to punish Sully and you get about a 95% of bad Buford.  You need to have Thomas on the floor to keep defenses from pulling back side help on Sully.  It sucks, but I really think we have the best lineup as is. In spells, Amir and Sully can work, but only in short spells.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Squirrel Master's picture

I disagree. Thomas spread the floor as a threat but Smith can play that role as well and isn't horrible at it. maybe a bit more streaky. Plus if the intent is for Sullinger to develop more of an outside shot, then there is no one for the offensive board unless Smith sneaks in on the weakside. Thomas is not a offensive rebounder.

Sullinger was fine with having to get space and offense when he played with Lauderdale. If someone is going to space the floor for Sullinger it should be an inside-out game with either Smith or Buford. Thomas is not that type of shooter. So spacing isn't the issue.

Thomas is a defensive liability and I feel the problem is more on defense that causes the issues for offense. and I think Amir would develop a better offensive game than lauderdale had and would help sullinger.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

M tots's picture

Deshaun Thomas is a beast on the Offensive glass... He seems to pick up 4-6 "cheap" points a game off of Offensive rebounds.  He is 2nd on the the team in Offensive Rebounds with 58 (Sullinger leads with 66)

Squirrel Master's picture

BEAST??????

Okay, he ranks 2nd in offensive rebounds. Smith Jr. is 3rd behind him with 41, not bad for a SG. While you are looking at stats, look at the defensive rebounds. You want your starting PF to be 4th in total rebounds? not to mention he is not in top 5 of all other stats. Steals, Assists and block shots.

He isn't providing enough on offense and does very little on defense. Sullinger needs help down low, not another streaky scorer.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

M tots's picture

Yes, beast.  He gets himself in good backside position, and goes up and gets it.  He has such a quick release, never bringing the ball back down (where Sully runs into some trouble), enabling him to get so many putbacks.  Also, I never said anything about DT being a good defensive rebounder or about Lenzelle Smith not being a good Offensive rebounder in his own right.  All I was doing was refuting your statement "Deshaun Thomas is not an offensive rebounder" because that could not be further from the truth.  

awwwwwwop's picture

Thomas is a way better threat than Lenzelle.  A team will watch him shoot threes all night because they know Smith Jr. is not going to beat you 28/30 times.  Smith does not spread the floor at all.  he sits up top while his defender sags down to double Sully.  Smith cannot play that inside out game with Sully.  You need Thomas on the other side to make teams fear the swing around. Smith has 3 10+ pt games this season and was 0-2 from range against Michigan (he got most of his 17 points on putbacks and fouls 12 reb, 5-5 from the line). A real problem is that Craft is the only competent passer on the team to the low post.  Last year when Diebler and Lighty were excellent passers and shooters, the inside out game was deadly.  This year we have 0 to 2 shooters on a given night, neither of which deliver a good post ball.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Squirrel Master's picture

Not comparing Smith and Thomas straight up. What I am saying is I would prefer to have Smith be the outside threat with Sullinger at his more natural 4 position and a 6'11'' Amir at center than have the 3rd best scorer at the 4 and Sullinger out of place at center. I did say Smith is not the scorer Thomas is. but he is a good enough shooter to play that role. Do you not read what you write. "Smith cannot play that inside out game with Sully.  You need Thomas on the other side to make teams fear the swing around". How does that make Thomas help Sullinger for an inside out game if Thomas is on the other side of the floor?

and FYI, Thomas isn't Mr. consistancy himself. 2-12 against MSU. If he is going to shoot like that with his defense, I would much rather have him on the bench and Amir on the floor. At least Amir can play defense.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

awwwwwwop's picture

Do you not read what i write? I didnt say Thomas helps with the inside out game. EVER.  If you would have read what I said instead of just being a dick, you would realize the I was saying we shouldnt even be running the inside out. We do not have the personnel like we did last year.  The way Thomas helps is that it forces teams to stay honest on his threat from inside and out and does not allow them to double down off of him.  No coach in the big ten would face guard Lenzelle and let Sully destroy you 1 on 1.  I think you would see a lot of coaches bringing their center over to double Sully and leave Amir alone.  I really thought we were having a good conversation.  I hope next time you leave the asshole at home and just post thoughtfully.

Edit: also from my first post

You need to have Thomas on the floor to keep defenses from pulling back side help on Sully.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Squirrel Master's picture

2-12 really makes teams scared. and I wasn't been a dick. Just wonder why you bring up that Smith doesn't work with the inside out game then talk about Thomas helps on the weakside. I say Smith can help on the weakside just as much as Thomas and guess what, he plays the position of a wing player, not power forward.

and since M-tots wants to toss stats out, how about this one since Thomas is a scarier outside shooter: Smith 3 point % - 40.1%, Thomas - 31.3%. Thomas has taken TWICE as many 3's than Smith yet has only 7 more makes. I don't see how Thomas should be anymore concerning on the outside than Smith with those stats. and the whole point of this conversation is that Thomas provides very little help in the paint with Sullinger. Sullinger is on an island as a center. He needs help so he can play at the 4 spot.

Since I am a dick for pointing out the issues I have with your statements, lets look at this one: "Smith has 3 10+ pt games this season and was 0-2 from range against Michigan". That was against MSU and in that same game Thomas went 0-5 from 3.

I am not arguing that Smith is a better player than Thomas. Thomas is a better player. but Thomas does nothing for the role of a forward next to Sullinger. This team needs to help Sullinger in the paint. Not jack up more missed 3's from Thomas OR Smith. You do agree with that right? It is what has killed this team the past few chances its had to make a run at a Championship. 2-20+ against Florida and 6-16 last year against Kentucky. If there is no Diebler or Lighty then how about not trying to shoot a ton of 3's and dominate the paint by slashing and passing.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

awwwwwwop's picture

Since I am a dick for pointing out the issues I have with your statements, lets look at this one: "Smith has 3 10+ pt games this season and was 0-2 from range against Michigan". That was against MSU and in that same game Thomas went 0-5 from 3.

Wrong.  The game was against Michigan, not MSU.  Against MSU, Smith had 2 points, was 1-4 from the field and 0-2 from range. Against Michigan, Smith was 6-12 for 17 pts and 0-2 from the field.  Here is a link to his game by game stats if you want to check my work. http://espn.go.com/mens-college-basketball/player/gamelog/_/id/51404/lenzelle-smith-jr

I said you are being a dick because instead of politely disagreeing or saying that my statement confused you, you asked me if I read what I write.  Yes, I do.  I brought that up because you were seeming to imply that Smith Jr. would be the one who would make up for Thomas' lost points by playing the inside out game and I just didnt see it.

Back side help can come from multiple places in basketball, from below the hoop or on the perimeter.  Deshaun Thomas forces his defender to guard him in both places and not leave to cover Sully.  I agree with you that this team is not built to rain threes which is why I am not worried about an inside out game as you seem or at least seemed to be. Deshaun Thomas can create his own shot, hit the offensive glass, and drive.  I also never made the claim that Deshaun Thomas is a lights out shooter, I am not stupid and can read statistics.  What I am saying is that Thomas forces an opposing coach to leave a defender on him.  Does 2-12 scare opposing coaches? No. But he doesn't average 2-12. He averages 52% and 14 pts a game.

While I respect and agree with your argument that Amir may help Jared on the defensive end, I believe that putting Williams in the game instead of Thomas would allow 4 out of 5 opposing defenders to play defense on Jared, limiting his scoring ability from anywhere on the floor. 

If I were an opposing coach like Izzo, I would not hesitate to double or triple down on Jared and leave Smith Jr., Craft, and Williams open. If they are going to beat me, I wasn't going to win anyway so that is a risk I am willing to take. 

 

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Squirrel Master's picture

Smith was 0-2 from 3pt range in both games. Thomas went 1-5 and 0-5 from 3 in both. but I am going to leave this alone because I have no desire to continue that topic. It is going no where and the reality is they both show flashes then both disappear alot. and honestly I don't think either really help Sullinger at all.

I don't think having Amir in will change coverage. I already see teams doubling and tripling Sullinger no matter who is on the floor on offense. MSU did and Amir didn't even get into the game. So teams really are not getting spread out (some of the better teams at least) because of really anyone of the shooters for OSU. When OSU is cold with their shooting, its going to be a low scoring night for them no matter the coverage. We have seen this team not be able to make shots for long stretches.

I just think that having a true center on the floor can help the defense alot more, will take off some of the beating that Sullinger gets on that end so he has more energy for offense. I am looking at what would help Sullinger the most. Allowing Sullinger to play his natural position is what is best for him. Plus I really do see Amir growing on offense. He is not Lauderdale. Amir could get 10 pts on either put backs or the same easy baskets that Sullinger provides out of double teams to Thomas. Amir does have good hands and some moves. If he is allowed to blossom he will contribute on D like we have already seen and a decent amount of points on offense. He is not Lauderdale. Teams will have to be concerned about him anywhere 5 ft from the basket.

I saw a UFO once.......it told me to have a goodyear!

awwwwwwop's picture

Well said.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Buckeye 09's picture

That was a great skull session, but it was a direct rip off of things Kevin Noon has reported in the past. 11W would have no content without Kevin Noon. Kevin Noon is the only person capable of getting any information on OSU athletics. Kevin Noon is the only person with a camera on his phone to take awesome pictures inside of the WHAC too. Also, Kevin Noon invented the internet so anything on here deserves attribution to him for creating it.

VestedInterest's picture

Mornin' Kev, how's it hangin'?

Run_Fido_Run's picture

I don't know Kevin Noon - I just learned of him yesterday via his tizzy fit - but I do know good satire. Bravo, sir!   

Northbrook's picture

How many hookers has he killed?

luckynewman13's picture

He killed hookers, too? I thought only Craig James Killed Five Hookers while at SMU.

How many people have done this?

When I first heard Craig James Killed Five Hookers while at SMU, I just couldn't beleieve it. I mean, just saying it to myself "Craig James Killed five hookers while at smu" I sound like a crazy person.

Craig James killed five hookers while at SMU? What lies people are telling these days!

Bam_Childress's picture

Why doesn't Amir Williams play more?  In "game over" situations hes been great, and when hes played when the game was still on the line he didn't hurt the team at all.  Were in desperate need of a shot-blocking presence down low.  

5 ft 9 in - 185 lbs - ALL HEART

Breakawayspeed's picture

I agree.  We are not going to match up well with top tier teams that have length once the NCAA tourney begins.  In the B10, Williams could be a nice counter for Zeller and that big kid fro Illionis whose name has temporarly escaped my memory. 

causeicouldntgo43's picture

"Horned Bongs" - good one! Hope it sticks, but I doubt it - all will be forgotten soon. Now if that little drug bust would have happened in, say, oh, I don't know, Columbus, then you can bet the boys and girls at ESPN would be giddy with delight............

BuckeyeJim's picture

How would you feel about each university being able to offer the same number of schollies per year? As an example, let's say that each school could offer 25 schollies per year. Each school would need to be more diligent about how they go about offering scholarships. The final number of players that you end of with on your roster would be determined by transfers, injuries, getting kicked off the team for violations, and ,to a larger part, getting quality student athletes. If a coach is doing his homework correctly, he could end up with over 90 players on his team. If the coach takes chances on thugs, he may end up with less than eighty. The mighty NCAA would still have the authority to remove the number of schollies that a school could offer because of their fair minded rules.

causeicouldntgo43's picture

Without really looking at this in more detail, it looks pretty reasonable on the surface. Of course the SEC would not like it.........

Catch 5's picture

Great article.  A lot of what I have been trying to point out, and some decent ideas.

“It would be absurdly easy to eliminate oversigning with no improvement in student-athlete welfare.”
and
“the oversigning limit is meaningless because a coach can simply clear out enough scholarships for whatever size class he wants by nonrenewing more current players before signing day”

 Dead on, and from an oversigning opponent.

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

Nappy's picture

Jaws is annoying.  I like Tirico and Gruden together.  The MNF broadcast will be better w/o Jaws getting all excited about a pretty standard NFL play. 

Never heard of Vince Dooley until yesterday.  Guess he's not that much of a legend.  And I cant take anyone seriously who wears creamsicle pants. 

Horned Bongs is good.  I also like Texas Cocaine University. And I thought I partied in college. 

Fan of bacon since 1981

William's picture

You never heard of Vince Dooley?

Nappy's picture

No, and I'm 30 and have been watching college football since I can remember.  Maybe I heard the name in the past and just never stuck? 

Fan of bacon since 1981

William's picture

Haha alright, I just find it surprising that people haven't heard of Dooley, he was a pretty damn good coach at UGA, and then of course became their AD. Coached Herschel Walker if that rings a bell.

Maestro's picture

Which Herschel Walker though?

vacuuming sucks

Nappy's picture

49 year old MMA Herschel Walker

Fan of bacon since 1981

Maestro's picture

Oh, that one.

vacuuming sucks

LadyBuck's picture

My weekend plans are interesting. I'm playing for the Womens' BBall team tonight, going to a women's retreat tomorrow through saturday, cheering on the Bucks saturday night, and then practicing my brains out for an audition monday. All in all, not too bad.

Doc's picture

Well good luck to you and the rest of the women's BB team.  You are a fun bunch to watch.  Enjoy your retreat and good luck with the audition on Monday.

"Say my name."

ArTbkward's picture

If memory serves me correctly, LadyBuck is in the athletic band, not on the bball team.

I seem to remember that in a old post, but I could be wrong.  Either way is cool.

We should strive to keep thy name, of fair repute and spotless fame...
(Also, I'm not a dude)