Lighteyes's picture


MEMBER SINCE   January 04, 2017

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Comment 36 minutes ago

I’ve always believed the two most important factors for the tournament were: (1) Your last 10 games

On a personal level, you can certainly believe this (and there's probably a good case for it), but this was removed from the selection criteria used by the tourney committee a few years back. Now, the time games occurred is not relevant; whether you were hot in November and December and mediocre the rest of the way counts the same as if you were mediocre in the early going and got hot in January and February.

Comment 47 minutes ago

Unless it's overwhelming, I wonder if Day would even 'officially' name Stroud or Miller as the backup rather than going with the famed OR. And both practice and garbage-time snaps very well might be split pretty evenly just to keep it clear that it's an open question.

In terms of how it would actually play out if the backup was needed, I think it would depend on game situation where you need a backup. 

If the chin strap breaks on Fields' helmet so he has to come off the field for a handful of plays while the staff fixes it, then the answer is probably the redshirt senior Hoak since you just want someone to not make a major mistake...but if Fields is unable to play for several weeks, it would almost certainly be rolling the dice on the higher ceiling of Stroud or Miller even if it means sweating out some freshman mistakes.

Comment 2 hours ago

The motive is a mix of:

(1) A lot of kids are already firmly committed well ahead of time and want to just be done with the process. Worth noting this was the 'official' justification that was repeatedly used when the December signing period was first proposed and discussed.

(2) More and more players want to enroll early anyways, since everybody thinks they're going to be a three-and-done to the NFL. But if you're not signing till February, it's a lot more likely you won't be able to enroll till summer which makes it harder to get real playing time as a true freshman.

(3) Coaches self-interestedly want to be done with recruiting this year's class. As plenty of coaches (including Urban) always say, you recruit your committed players just as hard as uncommitted targets. December signing day means you no longer need to focus on those guys and can turn your eyes either to the remaining February commits or to next year's guys.

That said, while it seems like a lot of coaches weren't necessarily expecting it to be so overwhelming (for all intents and purposes, December is Signing Day and February is just a few recruits per school), both players and recruits seem to generally like the December signing period*, so it's not likely it'll go back to just a single February signing day. 

*Except of course for the unfortunate kids who commit to a coach who leaves a week later, but the root cause of that is the letter of intent, not the December signing day; even in the old days there were assistants and a few head coaches who'd leave February 7th or whatever.

Comment 2 hours ago

True, but there isn't much work to do in terms of merely making the tourney. If they lose out (which would include a bad loss to a garbage Nebraska team), then they'd be sweating out Selection Sunday...but even just beating the aforementioned Nebraska team probably puts them safely in and two wins is basically lock status.

(Though obviously in terms of winning games in the tourney, the more they win now, the better the seeding will be rather than being a toss-up in the 8-9 or 7-10 first round games)

Comment 21 hours ago

I was surprised too.

The other thing that jumped off the page? Kentucky apparently has a killer offensive line, with the #26, #18, and #12 players on the list. The offensive line is only as good as its' worst player of course, so maybe the other two positions are a sieve and the overall line is less impressive than it looks...but dang, PFF's ratings would imply that Kentucky has a legit chance to have the best offensive line in the country next year.

Comment 21 hours ago

I don't know either and there are at least a couple beat writers and analysts who have been beating that "Browning should be outside not MLB" drum for years.

My only explanation is that (1) All-B1G Malik Harrison beat him out soundly for the OLB job and (2) Pete Werner's strong-side linebacker job is different enough that Browning wouldn't be viable there, but (3) Browning was still sufficiently talented and skilled that the coaches knowingly decided to play Browning at a position he didn't quite fit just to get him on the field.

Effectively, if you think of it like a video game-esque number grades, Harrison is a 95 at OLB, while Browning is only 92 at OLB and 85 at even though playing snaps at MLB isn't his "best" position, it's still good enough to be worth getting him on the field at MLB rather than having him languish on the bench.

Comment 17 Feb 2020

Because the "actual people doing the selecting and seeding" are currently well aligned with the "assumptions". You think it's an issue that the Top 16 only includes two B1G teams...but when you look at the bracketologists, that's also the consensus of them and yet every single one of them has Ohio State in the "Should be In" and somewhere between a 6 and 8 seed. Which yes, means they could still blow it (most notably, by losing to garbage Nebraska), but also means they've got a decent amount of float room.

If Lunardi and etc were wildly off-base compared to the selection committee, then sure, disbelieve them all you want...but they aren't. And historically, for all the chatter about "this year's bubble is soft" and "it's so tough to pick between the final teams" and so forth...when the bracket is released, the bracketologists usually only miss one or two teams.

Also, FWIW, I don't put much stock into BTN calling out "disrespect". First off, they're literally paid by the conference, even though I do respect the effort they put in to be neutral. More importantly, BTN newscasters know far more about the B1G than any other conference because it's what they cover every day. When it comes to choosing between very similar teams, they're naturally going to lean more towards the team they know in and out - because they know small explanations like "this close loss was marred by bad officiating" or "a key player got into foul trouble early and it spiraled" but don't know quite as much about similar "well actuallys" of teams across the country.

Comment 17 Feb 2020

I wouldn't read too much into the Top 16 - the B1G has a lot of really good teams, but only a couple of truly elite ones. You even see the same thing in media bracketology - ESPN right now has 11 B1G teams in the tourney, but only (2) Maryland and (4) Penn State are in the Top 16...though only Indiana and Purdue are true 'bubble teams' with a 10-11 seed.

But of course, they should try to win everything they can. Just was clarifying that even if they lose to Iowa and don't keep up the hot streak, it's not a reason to suddenly worry that freak out that they're missing the tourney and going to the NIT.

(Unless they lose to Nebraska, which would be a rough loss and would absolutely require at least one of the 'good' wins remaining to make up for it)

Comment 17 Feb 2020

There's definitely something to the fact the schedule has lightened up.

That said, it's worth noting that at 17-9 with a bunch of high-quality wins already, they don't actually need much in the way of success the rest of the way to make the tourney.

Nebraska is garbage, so they really need to win there to avoid picking up a bad loss.

But if we assume they win there, they're probably in good shape: They'd sweat out Selection Sunday even if they otherwise went winless, but probably make it in...and they'd be firmly off the bubble if they snagged even one of the other games (at Iowa, Maryland, TTUN, Illinois, at Sparty, or the first game in the B1G tourney) to have a 19-14 overall record with a lot of Q1/Q2 wins.

Comment 14 Feb 2020

They're fairly strong rivals...but when push comes to shove, a head coaching job is a head coaching job. There's been enough coaches who have crossed over to the other side of rivalries that it wouldn't be unique. 

Especially for a Power 5 job like Colorado which has decent facilities and financial support relative to their conference, is in a division without a clear standout, and has very reasonable expectations. There are definitely concerns and issues with the job, but for a guy like Alford (25 years and counting as a FBS position coach!), it's enough of a step up that I can't imagine he'd turn it down solely because of the alma mater/rival connection.

Comment 13 Feb 2020

This is really the right lens to view SP+, I think - big picture not sweating the exact numbering. And I think the tiers seem pretty accurate overall - the top 4 are going to be on every list of "teams which can win the 2020 national title", the next grouping is a pretty solid set of teams that have consistently shown the ability to finish in the top 10 but are a clear step below, then you get further down to programs with more obvious question marks.

The only teams that I think SP+ is completely off the mark are Texas A&M (just like you, I'm not buying them till they actually show some consistency) and USC (so much negativity around the program that it could implode spectacularly if the blowout loss to Alabama week 1 is quickly followed by another loss at Stanford or at Utah).

I also think at least one of Tennessee, Miami, and Nebraska isn't going to remotely live up to the Top 25-ish expectations that the SP+ ranking shows but that's far enough down it's hard to get too excited; you're predicting an 8-4 year essentially and you could probably put at least like 15 different programs where I'd shrug and go "sure, I guess I could see that". But I will say that I feel confident that at least one of these historical powerhouses actually will finally live up to the hype and actually have a season that raises hope that they're back on track.

Comment 13 Feb 2020

To me, the numbers seem to indicate that the strategy is basically this:

TTUN sends out their batches of letters and 'offers' to blue chip Ohio kids, just like everyone else does...but if the response is anything other than than an immediate "Ann Arbor? Oh yeah baby, that sounds great, let's talk!" strong positive response, they move right along - no fighting for a kid, no trying to convince someone who's on the fence, etc, just take that initial acceptance and spend efforts/energy/time elsewhere.

Comment 12 Feb 2020

Yeah, Ohio State's dominance is a huge part of the record discrepancy here - they were ranked the entire conference season in 2010 and 2012-2019 and went something like 65-7 in the B1G in those years. So the fact that the Big Ten (and ACC) have had dominant teams really skew the numbers for the rest of the conference...while the Pac-12, where the best team in the conference has rotated a lot (Stanford/Oregon, then Washington, USC's Darnold year, now Oregon again) flattens the numbers.

I'd be interested to see what the numbers look like for purely out of conference games, because on a "let's compare conferences", that's probably more representative. Totally off the cuff, I'd probably guess Ohio State is somewhere around 65-70% there, since they're 6-3 in bowls outside of 2011 and they typically have 0 to 1 ranked opponents regular season each year and win most of those.

Comment 10 Feb 2020

I don't know.

On one one hand, the kind of "hey, #64 needs to chill or I'm going to toss him a 15-yarder" or the like would probably be beneficial for Ohio State to hear and it's odd that Meyer and his incredible focus on details wouldn't take advantage of little hints like that. But on the flip side, I can't think of a game off the top of my head under Urban where a key penalty actually turned a win into a loss*, so there's no real evidence that skipping that normal back-and-forth actually hurt Ohio State.

*Iowa 2017 had the Bosa ejection yeah, but (a) they lost by 29 points and (b) targeting ejections are single events, not something where this process would have been able to pre-emptively prevent a penalty.

Comment 04 Feb 2020

Nothing you've said about the current RB room makeup is incorrect...but that doesn't change the fact that it's the only position on the team where you have to write a full paragraph explaining why "actually, there's more talent here than meets the eye". Everywhere else, assistants are bringing in blue chippers and stocking their rooms with Top 100 guys upon Top 100 guys.

For the record, I actually like Alford - as I mentioned, Dobbins/Weber/Zeke were all 6th-12th in their own recruiting classes and played so well that you wouldn't realistically trade them for any of the higher ranked dudes ahead of them. So I do think they'll figure it out well enough. It's entirely possible that he can just be a coach who finds My Kind of Guys and develops them into studs and that'd be fine...but up until now he's always had a Top 75 recruit leading that room so it's definitely worth noting that recruiting isn't at the same level as we've seen in his entire tenure.

Comment 04 Feb 2020

Signing day is around the corner 

According to 247, they've already signed 19 of their 22 recruits back in December. And the remaining guys are all three-stars (including two who are listed as "N/A" in the rankings). So even if they lose all three remaining unsigned commits, it's not a big deal.

Comment 04 Feb 2020

I mean, in fairness, the prime of the Dantonio era wasn't really powered by elite recruiting either; their class is currently ranked 42nd which isn't great...but is also right in line with the 2006-2008 classes that formed the backbone of his breakthrough 2010 team. And the key players that built those 11-win defenses were usually three-stars, not blue chippers.

Comment 04 Feb 2020

Agreed. Last year was not the plan - even if you think Williams was really underrated and will turn out to be a diamond in the rough (and he might), you still need to ding Alford for the way it played out since that was clearly not what they were trying to do.

I think people get way too wrapped up in the whole "no five stars at RB in X years!" thing because you wouldn't trade four-star Dobbins or four-star Zeke for any of the higher-rated five-star prospects that came out the same year...and even Mike Weber was arguably as good as anybody ahead of him except Derrius Guice and lol if you think a kid from Baton Rouge is going anywhere but LSU. BUT it is perfectly fair to note that Ohio State has gone from Top 75 nationally, highly-rated four-stars (#46 Dobbins/#69 Zeke/#75 Weber) the current roster of middle or low four stars like Teague (#228), Crowley (#370), and Chambers (#231) plus three-star Williams (#623). That's a much more important difference than the gap between "five star" and "not quite a five-star but still blue-chip that everybody wanted".

Comment 04 Feb 2020

I assume the thought process is that (a) being only up by 2 you absolutely do not want to leave an opening for a mid-range or layup, and (b) whatever the odds are of taking and sinking a rushed 30-foot jump shot, it's definitely lower than the odds of Turner drawing a shooting foul against tight coverage then sinking 2 of 3 foul shots. 

I mean, we've all seen the end of quarter/half/games where players jack up a meaningless half court shot as the clock buzzes just for fun...and how often do you see those go in? If anything, it's more common to see those things completely airball and end up in the stands than to bank directly into the basket.

Comment 03 Feb 2020

Then explained the economics to him. Whatever you give them is typically what the young couple has to start their lives together. So you gotta at least give them the break even for each person. 

Uh...what? I have literally never heard this expectation, ever. The point of having attendees is to throw a big party with people who care about you and want to wish you well in your married life. Of course, you do need to bring a gift within your means...but if you're broke (say, if you're a 19-year old college student like the Redditor who wrote the story was), then no, it's not likely you can afford a gift expensive enough to 'break even'. But the couple presumably still wants you there to celebrate since, y'know, they invited you, so you at least do what you can gift-wise even if it's only the set of grill tongs that the couple listed on the registry.

Though I'd love to see an update as to how the wedding went - because I really feel like you'd have a lot of guests who read the invitation and assume it's either a joke or a 'suggested amount', then show up, be surprised it's real, and decide "yeah, I'm not paying $100 for me and my date to attend your wedding", then just turn around and leave.

Comment 31 Jan 2020

Exactly. Ohio State is kind of the obvious example here: Nobody, not even a diehard TTUN fan, would argue that Ohio State is right at the elite of college football, perennial CFP contender, crushing recruiting rankings, etc, etc.

But on net, Ohio State and all their success annually have far more blue-chip players transfer out of Columbus than transfer in - in a typical year, Ohio State takes a couple of transfers if any, but every single year they also lose at least 3-4 blue-chip players who could have gone anywhere to lesser schools where there's playing time available.

Comment 30 Jan 2020

I don't think it's right to just say "double standard aside..." because that's literally the entire problem here!

If the department had decided to come down hard on everyone, then fine, that's your choice as an organization. Make a social media policy that applies to everyone that says "no showing work-related information on your personal social media, ever". Okay. Perfectly acceptable. Some counties might choose to set the bar differently, but as an organization, it's your right to set a firm line against appearing in work garb on personal social media.

But the fact there is no written policy and they're being completely inconsistent with it is why it's an issue - you can't go after her for being "too racy" and then turn around and have no issue whatsoever with male firefighters posing shirtless; nor make a deal out of her using photos of herself as a firefighter on her personal page and let dozens of other male co-workers slide for the same thing.