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  1. 38 likes
    As you see, I'm resigning, The IRL shit that's been going on has been too much too handle and to juggle around. I rather not say what it actually is, I just wanted to let you guys know that thanks for everything, the good and bad memories and the help. You guys are amazing, all of you, thank you for this chance to join the community and be apart of this great place. I don't know when I'll be back, I just know I will, one day, I know this is kinda sappy but again thanks to everyone, keep up everything, Peace y'all.
  2. 29 likes
    Abraham ran for 100 yards on 25 carries in week 10 against Seattle to give him 10,020 career rushing yards. Abraham went through three jerseys during his historic game Monday. But under them all he kept on the same white T-shirt, one with an image of the Dallas Cowboys star logo and the number 10,000. Some said he was too small, some said he was too slow. He dropped to the second round of the 2014 NFLHC draft being taken 19th overall by the Seattle Seahawks right before the team relocated to Dallas. Three running backs were selected before Abraham in the draft. But he has proven all doubters wrong and is the first player to rush for 10,000 yards. Known for his excellent vision, tremendous leg strength and great balance, Abraham has rushed for 100 yards in 64 of 89 career games (24 more 100 yard games than 2nd best). Chester Henson (the first running back drafted in 2014 ahead of Abraham) currently sits second on the career rushing list....but it's a distant second. Through week 10 of the 2020 season, here is how the top 5 all-time rushers stack up. All looking up at Abraham. 1. Vaughan Abraham- DAL – 10,020 2. Chester Henson – PIT – 8,379 3. Chad Dess – BUF – 7,869 4. Booker T. Washington – SEA – 7,420 5. Elvis Williams – NE – 7,366 Abraham is the only running back with a 2,000 yard season leading the league in 2017 with 2,055 yards. He has finished second in the league in rushing three times including 1,834 yards in 2018, the 3rd highest single season total. He won a National Championship at LSU in 2013. He has been named to the All-Pro team in 4 of his 6 seasons. He was the NFLHC MVP in 2016. He won a Super Bowl in Dallas in 2018. Abraham missed 3 games in 2019 and finished with his lowest rushing total since his rookie year leaving people to wonder if the wear and tear was getting to him. Currently 3rd in the league in rushing with 916 yards (16 yards behind the league leader), Abraham looks to have bounced back to his old self. He has 1 more year left on his current deal with the Cowboys and has said he has no plans of slowing down. Cowboy fans hope he sticks around long enough to set the rushing mark so high that it will never be broken. When Vaughan Abraham decides he's run enough, he will end up in the NFLHC Hall of Fame.
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    CFBHC v1.3b June 9th, 2017 Pre-Release v1.3.1.15 Notes: As usual thanks to the members who helped test this - there weren't many this time because I got this pumped out quickly with my new additional time. I appreciate the thoughts and input you guys have made in your private feedback forum threads. Just a heads up - version 1.4 will introduce a practice schedule system that will likely be added for 2021 after commissioners help beta test and may introduce prestige and firing for CFBHC and/or NFLHC depending on beta feedback. NFLHC * Added player happiness. Happiness is a sliding value from 0-100 that represents how content a player is with an organization. Happiness is not necessarily a reflection of only team success. Happiness is a hidden value but will result in a variety of visible events. * Added three new rejection reasons for players to refuse to sign a new or extension contract: Dislike of head coach or coaching style. Looking for contender team. Looking for free agent money. * Tied NFLHC events and happiness into contract situations. Players may express requests to draft certain positions via events, ask for certain offseason signings (including other specific players) or may express dissatisfaction with a head coach or coordinator. * Fixed a bug with progressions. * Fixed a bug with receving stat output. * Fixed a minor bug with stuck gameplan changes if not updated. * Fixed a minor bug with slant passes. CFBHC * Added Conference Media Accounts. Commissioners will receive the access information for an account associated with their conference and may share the account info at their discretion. Similar to the USA Today account this should be used for players of the week, official conference news, etc. and will expand and incorporate future roleplaying aspects in version 1.4. *Added un-positioned players to all future high school recruiting classes. These players will have no position (position listed will be NA) and no attribute (attribute listed will be [None]) and will be more heavily dependent on their size and weight for progression in their first two years. Just before beginning their junior year (either (Jr) or just Jr) they will be given a position and then progress with their normal position from then on. *Added true walk-on recruits. Teams with very low player counts may be restocked with somewhat random amounts of low skill recruits in the offseason that will have a position but no attribute (listed as [None]).
  4. 25 likes
    FAKE NEWS! Bengals owner Trey_Chaffin responds to criticism from Dolphins owner smckenz3. Bengals defeated Dolphins 27-24 over the weekend. "What smckenz3 is saying is fake news. Rather than complaining about the field conditions he should work on winning games because the Dolphins just don't win anymore."- Bengals owner Trey_Chaffin
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    Just here to say that, after 4 weeks, only one team in the state of Oregon has a win, and that team is not the Ducks
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    Jason Johnson and Aaron Shea are rewriting record books in 2020 and have their teams on the path to greatness After a slight lapse in Power Rankings (sorry, work has been terrible lately), we're back with an all new and improved Tiered System that is guaranteed to last...for probably just this week. Here's my thoughts about who's in, who's needs to play better, and who's probably been looking a little too intently at college players... Remember, if you don't like where you are in the rankings...play better! Tier One -- True Title Contenders 1. Los Angeles Rams 2. Carolina Panthers 3. New York Jets 4. Green Bay Packers 5. Detroit Lions 6. Indianapolis Colts Tier Two -- Playoff Bound, Not Quite Ready for the Crown 7. Dallas Cowboys 8. Seattle Seahawks 9. Jacksonville Jaguars 10. San Francisco 49ers Tier Three -- Work to Do to Make the Playoffs 11. Denver Broncos 12. Oakland Raiders 13. Atlanta Falcons 14. Miami Dolphins 15. Philadelphia Eagles 16. Houston Texans Tier Four -- Improved, But Drafting in the Teens 17. Cleveland Browns 18. Cincinnati Bengals 19. Tennessee Titans Tier Five -- 2019? That was HOW Long Ago? 20. New England Patriots 21. New York Giants 22. Kansas City Chiefs 23. Pittsburgh Steelers 24. Baltimore Ravens Tier Six -- Serious Scouting Started in Weeks Ago 25. Arizona Cardinals 26. Chicago Bears 27. Minnesota Vikings 28. Washington Redskins 29. Buffalo Bills 30. Los Angeles Chargers 31. New Orleans Saints 32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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    NO ONE MAY SUBMIT A RESPONSE. After several days of record rainfall Paul Brown Stadium crews have lost control of the grass situation. "It's a nightmare," said Groundskeeper Michael Smith. "We were already having trouble with the grass due to a weed problem and now it's completely run away on us. Fortunately the weed is also dead." "Weed? What weed? Where?" Bengals General Manager DangerZoneh responded in a press conference at the Stadium today. "We may need to bring new grass in. Hopefully the next home game is unaffected." Michael Smith added, "I'm working hard to find new sod but it's going to be a definite issue next game." Both teams involved in the next home game at Paul Brown Stadium will have their likelihood of fumbling be increased by 50% and the likelihood of injury is increased by 30%.
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    Recent polling conducted has found the following opinions of head coaches in their respective cities based on game planning and the teams performance relative to overall skill: Superb: Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders, Carolina Panthers, San Francisco 49ers, Los Angeles Rams Solid: Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Dallas Cowboys, Seattle Seahawks Acceptable: Cleveland Browns, Tennessee Titans, Atlanta Falcons, Philadelphia Eagles, Arizona Cardinals No Opinion: Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans, New England Patriots, Los Angeles Chargers, New York Giants Not Acceptable: Cincinnati Bengals, Pittsburgh Steelers, Miami Dolphins, Kansas City Chiefs, Tampa Bay Buccaneers Angry: Chicago Bears, Minnesota Vikings, New Orleans Saints Should be Fired: Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins
  9. 20 likes
    First win against a #1 team in Pitt history! Fuck Penn State!
  10. 20 likes
    Welcome to another edition of Five By Five, the Chicago Tribune's fastest-growing feature where we spotlight up to five programs from around the country. Every week, up to five randomly selected coaches will have the opportunity to answer five questions about their team and their players. This week, our panel consists of Duncan345 from Mississippi State, Wooden from Southern Miss, and CadeRich5 from Alabama; the other two coaches declined to return their questionnaires. Each coach will begin by answering the same four questions along with a fifth question unique to their program. Q1: By now, everyone's taken the field at least once--and some of you have played twice. Do you think what we've seen so far from your team is a good indicator for what we'll see for the rest of the season? Wooden, Southern Miss: I think what we showed week 2 against Rutgers is a good indicator of how we will look all season. I made some tweaks to the offense between weeks 1 and 2, and I think our offense will be scoring at least 20 points every game. Weir will always be consistent on the ground, but we do need our senior WR Randall Johnson to make more of an impact this year than he has so far, and I expect him to have some 100 yard games soon. CadeRich5: Alabama: Well, I love how our QB Antonio Pugh played in our first game against GT. We have plenty of weapons and he just needs to keep the ball safe and distribute. AJ Edwards might be the best wide out in the country, and he needs to have the ball in his hands to show it. Also, I was impressed by our teams ability to come from behind and get the victory in my first game in Tuscaloosa. Duncan345, Mississippi State: No. We have a lot of adjustments to make. We need to figure out how to make better use of our play makers on both sides of the ball. The whole team needs to work on their fundamentals too. Hopefully we can address those issues this week and get things on track. Q2: Obviously not all 21-point games are created equal, but all five of your teams gave up at least 21 points in your most recent outing. How do you feel about your defense's performance so far this season? Wooden, Southern Miss: My defense has not done a great job of creating turnovers so far, and we haven't been great against either the run or the pass. For the amount of talent we have on the defensive side, though, we have done decently, and I expect us to allow fewer points in CUSA play. Our redshirt freshman ILB, Micah Griffin, a former 5 star recruit, has had a great start to the season, making two statsheets in the first game, and I expect him to continue this play throughout the season. CadeRich5: Alabama: We may have given up 21 points, but we pitched a shutout in the second half. We picked off Beckett, one of the premier QBs in the ACC, and held their running game to just over 2 yards per carry. It may have taken us a little bit to get settled into the game, but I believe we have a strong defense that can keep us in any game this season. Duncan345, Mississippi State: We aren't going to panic just yet. Air Force has a potent offense and it was just one game. I don't think you will see this defense give up that many points very often. Q3: Without getting into confidential gameplan information, what are some of the broader tweaks you're hoping will take root in the upcoming weeks? Wooden, Southern Miss: Our QB, Alexander Cassidy improved dramatically from week 1 to week 2 when I tweaked what position group he targets when throwing the ball, and I think this change will help him over the next few weeks. CadeRich5: Alabama: I don't discuss gameplan decisions with the media. Duncan345, Mississippi State: We have to get the Ryan Childs the ball. I think we could also do a better job of letting our linebackers roam around a bit so they can make some plays. Q4: Who on your team would you expect to be an Academic All-American? Wooden, Southern Miss: Matthew Cunningham, our #2 WR, was the valedictorian of his class in high school. He is such a hard worker that I know his grades will translate to college, and I wouldn't be surprised if he ends up being an Academic All-American. CadeRich5: Alabama: SS Xavier Burroughs has been working hard in the classroom so far, as well as coaching up the younger guys in practice. He's got amazing work ethic and I expect his grades to show it. Duncan345, Mississippi State: Hunter Thurgood has really impressed me with his grades and his ability to absorb the playbook. He's just a redshirt freshman but he conducts himself like a seasoned pro. Q5 to Wooden: After the season-opening loss to Hawaii, your team really turned it around and laid a beating on Rutgers. What was the difference? Wooden, Southern Miss: The difference between our game against Hawaii and the Rutgers game was 100% Alexander Cassidy. When he throws 3 TDs and has ~70% completion, we can beat bigger teams like Rutgers, and I hope he can continue to play like this. Q5 to CadeRich5: Now that you've had a game to get settled in at Alabama, what do you think of your new team? Are there any major differences between how you coach them compared to how you coached Oregon? CadeRich5: Alabama: At Oregon, we were based around a strong ground attack, but here at Alabama we just have too many weapons to not sling the ball through the air. I'll be hoping to keep the guys balanced all while developing one of the defenses in the country like my 2019 Ducks. Q5 to Duncan345: Air Force has one of the best offenses in the country, and it showed your opener against them. How is your defense responding to that game, and what can we expect from them against Houston? Duncan345, Mississippi State: Air Force is a tough offense to play in the opening game. They looked good out there but we had some missed assignments. That's to be expected with a bunch of new guys playing in the opener, and it's even harder when you're playing an offense like Air Force. Obviously it was a different story last year with Tyler Jones creating pressure all day. I think the main thing with that offense is to get pressure on the QB without losing contain. It's easier said than done. I haven't scouted Houston so I don't know how to answer that question, but I can tell you that they will have their hands full. Their biggest weakness is probably defending against receiving Tight Ends, so Houston will want to work on those plays this week.
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    Big shoutout to @smckenz3 for writing up my crappy rankings last week...he poured a ton of time into that and it is much appreciated. Just another of the great guys on this site...thanks! Some serious movement in the top half of the rankings this week, and a bit toward the bottom as well. While we're certainly seeing a clearing of top-tier teams from the herd, the great middle is muddled as ever. This week, I'm gonna provide one stat per team that points to why I have them ranked as such. Enjoy! Remember, if you don't like where you are in these rankings...play better! CCG Favorites--Pick Range: #29-32 1. Los Angeles Rams Why: The Rams lead the League in 15 statistical categories, but we'll go with Best DYPP defense in the League (22.03), 3 points clear of 2nd place (19.51), where 3rd place is 18.67. Wow. Good luck, everyone else. 2. Carolina Panthers Why: Best 3rd Down % in the League (39.84%). Skaggs won't let them punt. And the 2nd best scoring team in the League. 3. Indianapolis Colts Why: 7 straight wins, is ridiculous, but par for the course for the team with League's highest rated QB (minimum 150 passes): 117.28, 25-4 TD-INT ratio. 4. New York Jets Why: Discipline and efficient balance. 2nd fewest penalties in the League, #4 in OYPP, #8 in DYPP. Those numbers equate to good coaching. Playoff-caliber Teams, One Could Get Hot and Win It All--Pick Range: #21-29 5. Detroit Lions Why: League's best YPCA (3.77) and YPGA (72.7) means you can't run on the Lions. If you have to pass, that's when Keyshawn and Cam Jones smile. 6. Dallas Cowboys Why: League's best OLine rating (8.32) and fewest sacks allowed (11) plus 3rd best DYPP means that Dallas wins both sides of the line of scrimmage. 7. Green Bay Packers Why: Offensive Efficiency. The Pack are only team in the League under 11 OYPP (10.5). In this League, offense usually wins. 8. San Francisco 49ers Why: 2nd best YPG/YPGA ratio in the League. Coach Duncan knows that field position wins games in the Playoffs. 9. Jacksonville Jaguars Why: Fewest Turnovers in the League. Barkley & Co. have turned it over only 5 times (all INTs). 10. Atlanta Falcons Why: Stingiest 3rd Down % Defense in the League (22.14%) plus 2nd most sacks in the League. RIP QBs on 3rd down. 11. Philadelphia Eagles Why: Best YPGA (218.6) and Most defensive TDs means the Eagles have playmakers all over the D. Combine that with the League's 2nd best 3rd Down % on O. 12. Denver Broncos Why: 2nd best YPAA in the League (7.1) in the pass-happy AFC West is solid. 13. Seattle Seahawks Why: By many measures, the Hawks have the League's 2nd best defense, highlighted by their insane 6.43 YPAA. Edge of the Playoffs--Pick Range: #14-20 14. Oakland Raiders Why: Most safeties in the League (2) is mitigated by giving up as many points as they score (0 score differential, 238 each way). 15. Miami Dolphins Why: Excellent trench warfare. Dolphins have given up only 13 sacks, and are #4 in the League with 27 sacks in their own right. 16. Houston Texans Why: Offensive efficient is good (6th in OYPP, 4th in 3rd%), but overall YPG is 30th. Get those guys playing a little faster, eh? 17. Cleveland Browns Why: Top yardage defense in the League (302.5 YPGA) and solid YPCA is balanced 5th worst YPC. Apparently, a game against CLE is a giant stalemate. 18. Cincinnati Bengals Why: The number 15 is rough for the Cincy offense: 15 INTs ties for 2nd worst in the League, and 15 drops IS the worst. 9.49 YPAA is also the worst mark in the League. 19. Kansas City Chiefs Why: Chiefs can't get to the QB. Fewest sacks in the League (9) leaves lots of time for opposing QBs to pick apart their secondary (-20 YPGD). Economy Seats on the Airplane of NFLHC--Pick Range: #5-13 20. New Orleans Saints Why: Worst pass yardage and overall yardage defense in the League outweighs being tied for 6th in offensive yardage (366.1 yards per game). 21. Baltimore Ravens Why: Ravens can stop the run (2nd best YPCA in the League) but not the pass (2nd worst YPAA). Opposing coaches, you know what to do. 22. Pittsburgh Steelers Why: Causality. PIT can't get to the QB (4th fewest sacks), which means QBs pick them apart (4th worst YPAA). 23. Arizona Cardinals Why: Offensive efficiency starts up front. Cards have 3rd worst OLine rating (7.43) and the 3rd worst OYPP and 3rd Down %. 24. Tennessee Titans Why: The Titans are almost the League's most average team, except for their point differential (-59, with 18 TDs scored and 27 allowed). 25. New York Giants Why: Giants see the fewest plays on defense in the League, but need to stay on the field during 3rd downs on offense (5th worst 3rd down %). 26. New England Patriots Why: Pats are a sieve in run defense. Worst rush yardage team by a mile (115 per game, 5.4 per rush) kills a good pass defense (225 yards pass per game). 27. Chicago Bears Why: Most sacks in the League (34) matches the number of TDs given up (34, tied for 5th worst). 2nd worst rushing offense (60 ypg) doesn't help. Possibly Picking #1 Overall-- 28. Buffalo Bills Why: Buffalo's 3rd down offense is atrocious (only team under 20%) and their passing offensive is 2nd worst in the League (#31 in YPG and YPA). 29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Why: Points are hard to come by for the Bucs. League's lowest scoring team per game (14.4) with the 2nd worst point differential means it doesn't get better when the Bucs move to D. 30. Minnesota Vikings Why: Worst rushing yardage offense in the League means that Vikes can't get into the end zone (4th lowest scoring per game). 31. Los Angeles Chargers Why: The ball is precious and the Chargers don't like the ball. Most turnovers in the League (15 INT, 10 FL) combines with 2nd worst YPC (3.46). 32. Washington Redskins Why: All the reasons. Worst yardage offense per game, fewest total TDs, most penalties. There are areas in which the Skins aren't terrible, but they are rare.
  12. 19 likes
    You've been visited by Chaos Buffalo. Like this post 25 times to appease Chaos Buffalo. You could be next.
  13. 18 likes
    I knew we were losing this because winning would have made sense and I'm a shot coach so nothing ever makes sense. Gg Saints.
  14. 18 likes
    Welcome to another edition of Five By Five, the Chicago Tribune's fastest-growing feature where we spotlight five programs from around the country. Every week, five randomly selected coaches will have the opportunity to answer five questions about their team and their players. This week, our panel consists of thetrain23 from UTEP, Jieret from Western Michigan, reigning ACC and National Coach of the Year Emperor_of_Orange from defending ACC champion Clemson, caesari from Miami of Ohio, and two-time Big Ten champion and CFBHC founder and commissioner Soluna, now at Florida. Each coach will begin by answering the same four questions along with a fifth question unique to their program. Q1: How would you grade your team's performance in week 1? [For teams with byes, the question was altered to: While some teams were in action this week, how would you grade your team's preparation for its week 2 opener?] thetrain23, UTEP: Well, we had a bye, so we spent most of the week practicing, having fun, and enjoying opening weekend. Our biggest focus as we approach our first game this week has been on consistent execution and making sure we have our new schemes down. I think we've done a pretty great job of that in practice, but the real grading comes Saturday. Jieret, Western Michigan: Probably a C+. We're expanding our offense and adding some new wrinkles, so there were things to iron out. Fortunately our defense stepped up for us once again, they're good enough to allow us some leeway on the offensive side. Emperor_of_Orange, Clemson: I'm pretty thrilled with the outcome, the defense showed me that it is good enough to carry this team while the offensive line develops and gels as a unit. Redshirt Freshman Glenn Thorpe was a dominant force and greatly strengthens this defensive line, overall I think the defense is elite at every level. Marquise Holliday was himself, and I think he's only adding to his Heisman hopes. caesari, Miami (OH): I think the answer has to be an A+. Nevada has been a team we've spent the entire offseason preparing for, and we knew that they could potentially be our toughest opponent all season. To open with a win against a playoff team from last year has boosted morale to a level we haven't seen in a couple years. Soluna, Florida: I'm more than happy with the offensive production from our win against NDSU but I need to work on tweaking the gameplan/O-Line a bit more to be entirely happy. I'm somewhat disappointed with the defense but I think I can iron out the issues pretty quickly as the low points of the game were pretty much what I was expecting. As of now I'll be happy at 7-5 with a bowl game. Q2: What do you feel your team most needs to improve on heading into its next game? thetrain23, UTEP: Last season, the offense was just atrocious, especially in the passing game. Despite that we're gonna be starting a true freshman at QB this season, I'm actually optimistic we'll be able to score a lot more points this year. Jieret, Western Michigan: Definitely our third-down conversion rate. We're not built to be an explosive offensive so we have to be brutally efficient, 3 of 15 on third down won't get it done. Emperor_of_Orange, Clemson: I'd like to see a little more accuracy out of Jamel Armstrong, and a higher punting average. caesari, Miami (OH): Our running game isn't something we rely heavily on, but Ajani Garrett is someone we'd really like to get rolling. He's an incredibly talented guy in a system that only gets him 12-15 carries a game. We'd like to see those carries translate into even better production. Soluna, Florida: I need to pin down the secondary a bit more. Even though, as I said above, the offense was a bit flawed in game 1 it was serviceable enough that I can focus on improving the defense. I definitely need to get the D involved before rolling fully into the conference schedule. Q3: Who should be getting more attention on your team that the national or conference media hasn't picked up on? thetrain23, UTEP: That's gotta be our senior running back Justin Barksdale. He's been the best player on the team for the last two years, and I think his national perception last season was harmed by poor coaching and a generally bad team around him. I think he'll have 1200+ yards and double-digit touchdowns this season, and he'll have a good shot at All-CUSA. Jieret, Western Michigan: Junior ILB Kareem Boykin. Since he transferred to us from a New Jersey JuCo, all he's done is make tackles with the occasional interception thrown in. Sean Taylor gets the spotlight (and for good reason), but Boykin is probably our most important defensive piece. Emperor_of_Orange, Clemson: My WR2 Corey Bolden. Corey finished last year as the WR3 behind the Josiah/Marquise combo, collecting 52 passes for 703 yards and 10 touchdowns. He was the most prolific receiver against TCU with 7 catches for 89 yards and 1 touchdown and I think he could end up being All-ACC. caesari, Miami (OH): I will forever sing the praise of Zach Cera. Kenneth Harrison is already the most productive receiver in the MAC, but his QB hasn't been talked about enough. Cera lead the conference in most statistics last year and I think he could make a run at many of the MAC career records before his time at Miami is over, and even carve out an NFL career for himself. Soluna, Florida: Timothy Key, DE - I have always kind of wondered why he's so overlooked. I'm terrible at coaching D-Line, it's always been my worst group, but Key has already showed that it almost seems to not matter. I think he'll finish top 5 in sacks easily. Q4: Who among your underclassmen has been stepping up as leaders in the locker room? thetrain23, UTEP: Probably DE Patrick Coon. He's a true freshman, but he's already slated to start, and he's been ahead of even some of the sophomores and juniors in knowing his playbook and playing smart football. He's out there every play making sure his team knows where to line up and how to play the schemes. Jieret, Western Michigan: Is it cheating to point at my QB, RSo Chase Sims? I threw him in the fire after Week 4 last season and he responded admirably. This year, Chase is inspiring the guys with all the extra work he's putting in. Even though the job is his he isn't coasting and the team respects him for it. Emperor_of_Orange, Clemson: Definitely Marquise Holliday. He's a seasoned leader at this point, as he was a defensive leader from the day he stepped on campus. caesari, Miami (OH): We are most proud of Casey Swann, our tight end. Coming into the season we wanted to get him more involved, but sometimes the game dictates that we look elsewhere. Casey has been a great leader even when things aren't going his way. Soluna, Florida: Redshirt sophomore Abdoul Ridley has been contributing strongly all offseason since I got here. I'm fully expecting him to take the lead on defense for the next 2 years. Q5 to thetrain23: You're a fresh face in the coaching ranks of CFBHC. What kind of reputation are you hoping to develop over the course of the season? thetrain23, UTEP: I'm not going to sugarcoat it, this might be a tough year for us. We're a young team, and there's some talented competitors in our way. This season, our goal as a team is always play hard and play smart. You overwhelm us with superior talent, but you're not going to outwork us or outsmart us. We'd like to be a team that nobody wants to face this year, and everyone dreads facing next year. Q5 to Jieret: Out the door is Gabriel Shields, and in the lineup is DeSean Madison. How does the presence of an impact freshman at a skill position alter your long-term strategy? Jieret, Western Michigan: Short-term not much will change; if we felt the need to shelter DeSean or limit his carries he wouldn't have been named the starter over Gabriel. Long-term? It actually affects our recruiting more than anything. DeSean is a special kid and Western is lucky to have him, I have no doubt he will see the field on Sundays. But with Gabriel transferring out, our RB depth for the next few seasons is severely tested. We have to recruit a running back sooner than I would have preferred to. Q5 to Emperor_of_Orange: Despite a lot of hype surrounding Clemson following the title game run, you've been publicly downplaying expectations for a while now. Does the win over TCU have you recalibrating expectations in either direction at all? Emperor_of_Orange, Clemson: Beating TCU definitely gives me more confidence, but I just believe that Clemson this year is a team with a lot more flaws than last season. I believe we are deserving of our ranking, however, because so far we've shown that our strengths far outweigh said flaws. Let's just say I'm very cautiously optimistic. Q5 to caesari: Your team pulled off one of the more surprising results of the week by waxing Nevada. What kind of statement does this win make going forward? caesari, Miami (OH): The MAC is getting stronger every year, and historically Miami has been in the thick of the conference championship race. This kind of win sets the tone for the season: we aren't content with what happened last season, and we have a chance to make a major push this year. Hopefully the momentum carries on throughout the coming games. Q5 to Soluna: It goes without saying that you've had a lengthy track record of success. How much of what's tried-and-true did you try to carry with you when you accepted the Florida job, and how much priority did you place on adapting to a roster that's dissimilar to what you had at Penn State and Northwestern? Soluna, Florida: I will continue to use the same methods I employed in the previous jobs and start building the defense, improving o-line and core groups on offense then developing my final gameplan. It's going to take 2020 and likely 2021 to become established but Florida will return to national prominence soon.
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    REDEMPTION! Tigers exact revenge on Tennessee in overtime thriller LSU Kicker Wyatt Abel hits a 35 yard overtime game winner to secure an overtime win in Knoxville Two-hundred fifty-eight days ago LSU and Tennessee met in the SEC championship with a playoff playoff berth on the line. The Tigers led the entire game after an opening drive touchdown pass from Elias Allen-Hollis to Corey Garvin, until a Julius Thomas touchdown pass with 1:11 remaining put the Volunteers ahead by three points. The Tigers took the ensuing kickoff and drove to the Tennessee 40 yard line to set up a game tying field goal attempt as time expired. As Wyatt Abel hit the 57 yard field goal strait and true the kick didn't have the leg to send it to overtime and fell a yard short of the crossbar. On Saturday, the Tigers traveled to Knoxville looking to avenge that loss. The 18 returning LSU starters spent the offseason focusing on the third week of the season with an eye towards revenge. And this time, the sequel may have surpassed the original. The Tigers and Volunteers went toe to toe in a defensive slug-fest. Both teams struggled to produce offense, neither QB recorded a touchdown, and the score was tied at 13 at the end of regulation. As overtime started the Knoxville crowd was rocking but the veteran Tigers remained unfazed. The Tigers won the coin toss and elected to start on defense. The Volunteers begun their drive with a quick 6 yard out to Marcus Holms, followed by a 1 yard run to the left by Nikita Crowe. On 3rd down and 3 yards to go, head coach Sagebow called a five yard slant to Cameron Moss. Adrian Goldson took a short, one-step, drop, looked to his right, and let loose a dart in Moss' direction. However, as he let go of the ball, star LSU outside linebacker out-muscled Moss and got inside positioning. The pass hit Burton in the chest and he bobbled the ball only temporarily before intercepting the freshman quarterback for the first turnover of the game. With the defense forcing a turnover, the Tiger offense stepped onto the field needing only three points to seal the game. The Tigers started the series with an outside run by Jayden Huff around the right side of the line for six yards. On 2nd and 4 the Tigers lined up four wide before Huff motioned out of the backfield, and Allen-Hollis took the snap for a designed QB run up the middle for 2 yards. The Tigers elected to use their 3rd down play to move the snap back to the center of the field as Allen-Hollis took the snap and ran to the left and took a knee for a 1 yard loss. Less than one year ago, one yard cost the Tigers a playoff shot, and kicker Wyatt Abel said after the game that he felt personally responsible. Since that day, Abel has recreated that missed 57 yard attempt every practice, and he never left the field before three successful tries in a row. Abel was determined to see a different outcome this time around. Holder Blake Craig, set up at the 18 yard line as Abel trotted onto the field. Just 35 yards stood between Wyatt Abel and his personal redemption. The snap and hold were good, and Wyatt Abel drilled the ball straight through the middle of the uprights to secure the Tigers cleared their first hurdle for redemption.
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    "Unacceptable!!" Dolphins owner blasts Bengals Ownership and NFLHC Commissioner for "Unacceptable Field Conditions" Dolphins owner smckenz3 quoted as saying: "The league and Bengals should truly be ashamed of themselves for not moving that game. Player safety should be held in higher regard, we're truly lucky no one on either team suffered a major injury."
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    Some Notes: Browns game winning field goal attempt with no time on the clock hit the upright from 47 yards out. Ravens came back from 6-17 down with 4:03 left in the fourth quarter.
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    Beating #2 and then #23 is only worth 4 votes?
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    After taking a week off last week, here are the hottest takes from the Conference of Champions Stanford (2-0) at Arizona State (1-0) Stanford continues with a third straight 20+point victory: Stanford has looked very dominant in their two games so far. A 34-13 win over Utah last week, and a 41-21 win over a Notre Dame team who upset #16 USC in week one give the Cardinal a pair of 20+ point wins this season. Arizona State had a solid 2020 debut in a 31-23 win over Washington, but Sun Devil fans should have concern going into this week. After struggling week 1, Huskies QB Jake Davis looked a lot better against ASU going 16/22 for 230 yards and 2 tds/0 ints. Going up against one of the best QBs in the conference, Nicholas Garland (through 2 games: 640 yards, 5 tds/int), the Sun Devils are going to have to do a much better job of stopping the pass. Look for Garland and Co to keep rolling, and for Stanford to get their third 20+ win of the season. Washington (0-2) at UCLA (0-1) Jake Davis gets his first collegiate victory: Jake Davis and the rest of the Huskies looked very solid in their week 2 performance against ASU, a game that wasn’t decided until late in the 4th. A much younger UCLA secondary should give Davis the opportunity to continue his successes from week 2. UCLA lost a nail biter to Baylor in week 1, and should be able to content with anyone in conference if their offense continues to score like it did (51 points week 1). At the end of the day, I think Davis continues to build on his success and the UCLA offense takes a bit of step back, allowing Washington to get the win. Colorado (0-1) at #19 Arizona (1-0)* Sam Parish throws for at least 4 tds: Sam Parish may not have had the most monster game in week 2 (18/27, 220 yards, 2 tds/0 ints), but the fourth quarter comeback against Ohio State showed how explosive Parish can be. Arizona should have the pieces in place to contend for the South this season, especially after USC showed signs of weakness last week. Colorado looks to have what could be another rough season, after a week 1 blowout loss to USC (14-52). Not only did the Buffaloes struggle, but QB Luke Trickett exploded for 5 TDs through the air and 1 on the ground against them. While Parish may not have the same weapons around him as Trickett, look for Arizona to try to make a statement in conference by blowing out the Buffs. Texas (1-0) at Oregon (0-1) Yeldon is held scoreless for a second straight game: RB Trevon Yeldon fell below expectations in week 1 vs Vanderbilt with 105 yards on 20 carries, but zero tds. Unfortunately look for Oregon’s star man to be held scoreless again for the second time this season. Texas has a very talented front 7, anchored by OLB Jabari Fletcher (5.0/5.0) that should keep Yeldon contained. A weaker secondary might allow Oregon to find success throwing the ball, and may be the Duck’s best chance to score in the red zone. Oregon can keep this close, and perhaps even win, but it most likely won’t be on the legs of Yeldon. #7 Illinois (2-0) at Utah (0-1) Donald Culver throws at least 3 ints: Culver and the rest of Utah’s offense struggled to get anything going vs Stanford last week (Culver went 28/43, 340 yards, 1 td/1 int; just 13 points scored by Utah) and are going to have an even tougher time vs the Illini this week. With a 4.0/4.0 or better at 9 out of 11 defensive spots, Illinois looks to have one of the best defenses in the nation this year. Playmaking athlete Logan Holmes starting at CB1 and Tyler Patino starting at FS, should wreak havoc on Culver and the Utes this week. Culver will most likely have to shoulder the load for the Utes to have any chance in this one, leading him to make bad plays more often than good ones. Lots of mistakes will be made by the Mormon Laser Cannon, and even if there aren’t any, I don’t see Utah winning this one. San Jose State (1-1) at #16 USC (1-1) Jesus Cordero outshines Trickett: After his 6 total td outing in week 1, Trickett exploded into the Heisman race as an early frontrunner, only to fall back after a disappointing week 2 loss to Notre Dame. Most probably expect him to return to form in week 3, but I think Cordero will outperform his QB this week. In that week 1 routing of Colorado, Cordero had 16 carries for 73 yards and 1 td, not bad for a low volume workload. This week USC faces SJSU who starts 3 freshmen in their front 7 and a pair of senior CBs that may be the most talented players on defense they have. Cordero should be to dominate such a young front 7, and experience in the secondary may have Coach Dream thinking twice about passing as much. Don’t be shocked if Cordero, running behind an elite o-line, gets some Heisman talk himself after this one. California (1-0) at UAB (0-1) Hakeem Black gives Luke Cobb a run for his money: While there is no way Hakeem Black looks to duplicate Luke Cobb’s insane performance vs UMASS, he should light up the scoreboard vs UAB. At 6-2, 208 Black (5.0/5.0) poses a matchup nightmare for a much smaller UAB secondary starting 5-10, 165 Ricky Best (2.5/2.5) at CB1. Ultimately I think that UAB is a much better all-around squad than UMASS, and Cal isn’t quite built to air it out like FSU, which will keep Black from fully replicating Cobb’s performance. That being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if a national debate over which of the two is better comes as a result from this game.
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    After 4 weeks of play it is time to see who's hot and who's not in the PAC-12. Let's see which teams and players made (or missed) the cut. Who’s Hot – Undefeated Teams - Washington State Cougars – The Cougars are currently the highest ranked PAC-12 team sitting at 12th. David Oates-Elijah Talley have connected 25 times for 307 yds and 4 tds. The Cougars rush defense has more turnovers (5) than TDs allowed (4) and has limited opponents to under 13 ppg. Washington State has a bye this week. - Arizona Wildcats – Defense has been the story for the 15th ranked Wildcats. The defense has yielded only 2 TDs and is allowing less than 10 ppg and only 228 total ypg. The Wildcats defense has held opponents to 14.3% 3rd down conversions and has forced 6 turnovers while the offense is yet to commit a turnover. The Wildcats will face a tough test this Saturday when they travel to Eugene to play an Oregon team desperate for a win. - California Golden Bears – QB Leonard Norris has been solid throwing for 7 TDs and only 2 interceptions. The Golden Bears have a +3 turnover margin and have outscored opponents by an average of almost 10 ppg. Cal goes out of conference to host Southern Miss on Saturday. - Stanford – The Cardinal are currently ranked 24th thanks to the play of QB Nicholas Garland who has a 4/1 TD/INT ratio. The defense has more turnovers (5) than TDs allowed (4) and has limited opponents to under 14 ppg. Stanford faces a tough test on Saturday as the high-powered UCLA Bruins come to town. Who’s not – Winless Teams - Oregon Ducks – The Duck’s 0-3 start can be blamed on poor performances by the offense. QB Jason Baum has only 2 TD passes while throwing 5 interceptions and has completed <60% of his passes. The one offensive bright spot is star RB Trevon Yeldon who is averaging over 100 ypg. The defense also has to get better having only forced 1 turnover so far. A Saturday night game at home vs #15 Arizona is the Duck's chance to turn it around. - Utah Utes – QB Donald Culver was selected as the 1st team All-Pac 12 QB but has not lived up to the hype. He has thrown as many interceptions as TDs and is completing <60% of his passes. The Utes offense is averaging only 10 ppg while the defense is giving up 32.6 ppg. Utah gets the week off to try and regroup. - Washington Huskies – The Huskies are off to an 0-3 start and turnovers have been a problem. The offense has committed 5 turnovers while the defense has only 1 take away and has allowed opponents to score 33.3 ppg. And it doesn't get any easier for the Huskies with 3-0 Texas Tech coming to town.
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    San Jose State 6-66 USC And after yet another horrible disappointment with the loss to Notre Dame, Dream knew he had to take desperate measures, and to seek redemption he went into the underworld. "Make me a good coach," he asked of Satan. Satan replied, "I shall, but you know that I must take something in return". "Anything, dark lord" "I shall take...your brother's manhood." Satan said broodingly. "But...my lord, such a thing does not exist!" Dream exclaimed. "That is because I took it retroactively. You see, Dream, I knew long ago that you would come to me for assistance. So I took Dean's manhood in advance. This way he will never know what it is that he is missing." "Thank you dark lord," Dream said as he returned to the land of mortals. And thus began the dark ages where Dream's USC won 666 straight national titles.
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    "Which gameplan option do you feel like is the most misunderstood?" - Rome No idea to be honest. I think the primary offensive schemes aren't really fully understood by most people. Especially how to adjust them to fit the team you've built. It comes with experience though so people do eventually figure it out I think. Most everyone who has been here since at least the 2015 season is good in that regard or at least acceptable. "If time constraints forced you to downsize the simulations, would you rather only do NFLHC or CFBHC? Why?" - Rome Pretty tough actually. My quick response would have definitely been CFBHC when I built the site but I find that I'm usually more drawn to the NFL because of all the business decisions + draft outweighing the benefits from conference play and recruiting. NFLHC. "Who's the biggest bust you thought would be a great player?" - Rome Fred Tindale is the first person that comes to mind... Alex Bridgewater too. I think both were could have been amazing starters. Tindale got ruined by coaching and injuries and Bridgewater by being drafted to the wrong team. "If you play Civilization games, which Civ do you use?" - Rome I much prefer Paradox games to Civilization. Civilization is way too random with way too much "fake" depth for me. Technology doesn't make much sense although the random worlds are cool. For the Paradox games I like the Duke of Nassau (CK2), Brandenburg (EU4), Austria-Hungary (Victoria), and Germany (HoI4). "What's your girlfriend's reaction to this hobby?" - Rome She doesn't care and doesn't really like sports except esports (Dota only) and a little soccer and hockey.
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    Disbarred Lawyer Johnson Benched for Brad Davis Following Patriots' Humiliating 34-10 Loss to Kansas City Brad Davis looks on as Lawyer Johnson throws an interception to Devin Stephens
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    PAC-12 Game of the Week Week 2 The Game: Arizona State Sun Devils(0-0) at Washington Huskies (0-1) The Place: Husky Stadium The Time: Friday Night Why's this the PAC-12 Game of The Week? Washington's loss in the first game of the year was not the best way to start the season. Jake Davis threw 2 interceptions to start his college career and because of that the Huskies lost the turnover battle 2-0. Now Deandean's squad is going to play at home and are looking to get back to the right track and get their first W on the season. On the other side, the Sun Devils did not play in week 1 and are anxious about their first game of the season, hoping they can continue Davis' struggle to feel at home at the college level. 2. What to look for? It's usual to say that every game tells a different story, but if this game had a title before it was even played, it would be "The Battle of the Freshmen". We shall see how both of them deal with adversity. Davis is coming off of a loss, and will be playing his first game in front of the Huskies' fans. On another note, it will be the first game of Parker Townsend's career, and playing away is almost never a good experience for a young quarterback. 3. What's this game worths? On the Huskies' side, it's the chance to prove that they're a legit team this season, with chance of competing for more than just a bowl bid. While the Huskies fight to come back from a loss, the Sun Devils are looking to start their season on the right foot. They've gotta travel to Lake Washington to challenge a bitter Huskies team to prove to the critics that they will compete for the PAC-12 crown this year. 4. Keys to the Game As previously mentioned, Jake Davis started his career by throwing 2 picks, and the concerning part is that the Sun Devils defense is a lot better than their last opponent. Arizona State's secondary is led by three players that are extremely talented, experienced and will be playing on Sunday next year. Dylan Mosley and Sincere Noel are two safeties that no QB in the PAC-12 likes to face, and they will be patrolling the field on friday. Combine that with Nigel Strong's ability to shut down opposing WRs, and you have on of the best secondaries in the conference. Besides that, the Devil's still have a very talented LB core, guided by Garrett Holliday, another player that will be selected to play in the NFLHC. With all these good players, Washington's offense cannot lose the turnover battle once again. They have to put Arizona State's freshman QB in tough situations and make him make mistakes. Otherwise, we might see things go sideways once again for Davis and Deandean. 5. Key Stat Both teams will have to limit the passing attempts. QB is the most important position on the field, the position that requires the most experience, and neither QB has that. The team that strikes first will have a good chance to win, since both defenses, especially the Devils' defense, are very tough opponents. I'm betting that the team with more running plays will win, because it's never a good sign to make your freshman QB win the game for you. 6. Key Matchups This Arizona State team is very good, but their receiving core isn't anything spectacular. Their passing game will be in a tough spot, with their best player being wide Receiver Moussa Austin (3.0/3.0). Ibrahima Harrison, their TE, will probably be their go to guy, and he will have to have a great game. On the Huskies side, they gotta stay away from Arizona State's secondary. Like already said, they have at least three players that are going to play on Sundays next year. Jake Davis cannot throw a lot, otherwise he'll almost certainly commit mistakes that are going to be costly. 7. Best NFLHC Prospects ILB Garrett Holliday - Arizona State (81) SS Dylan Mosley - Arizona State (75) CB Nigel Strong - Arizona State (71) TE C.J Hickman - Washington (76)
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    All 14 of the prestigious SEC teams have played 3 games, lets take a look at some points of interest for each team so far! Alabama Crimson Tide Steady Bama Football - Antonio Pugh has played solid for the undefeated Crimson Tide, picking up largely from where Rory Weston left off. A.J. Edwards remains an elite deep threat and the big strength of this team is still this elite defense. Alan Tuitamalofo and Sebastian Smallwood have been beasts so far. Player of the Season (so far) - DE Sebastian Smallwood, 15 tackles, 6 sacks. Question Going Forward - Can they get a run game going? Tolani Catingub has really struggled getting anything going on the ground. Can Cade get the best out of the young running back, or will he rely more and more on Pugh? Arkansas Razorbacks Inconsistent Start - Connor Dawson has had moments of greatness, and moments of incompetence, and as he goes, so does Tyron Chambers and the rest of this offense. When he's on, Dawson is one of the best in the nation. Razorback fans are hoping he can stay hot as they get into the meat of their season. Player of the Season (so far) - WR Tyron Chambers, 24 receptions for 317 yards, 3 TDs (13.21 ypr) Question Going Forward - Who's going to step up on this defense? Robert Bleeker is living up to the billing as one of the top JUCO guys in the last cycle, but the senior corner can only do so much. Auburn Tigers Marcus Black is a Superstar - It's been amazing just how good Black's start to his sophomore season has been. He's got great pieces around him on the offense, but the way the Maestro coordinates guys like Sean Meade and Andre Curtis around him is truly remarkable. Auburn looks poised to be one of the best teams in the nation. Player of the Season (so far) - QB Marcus Black, 59 of 85 (69.41%) for 700 yards, 6 TDs, 0 INTs (161.88 passer rating). 14 carries for 87 yards, 2 TDs, 0 FUM (5.38 ypc) Question Going Forward - Can they stay hot? Really not much to doubt for the Auburn team. They look truly legit. Florida Gators Run the Freaking Ball - Ethan Newby has been a workhorse for the Gators as they sit tied for the lead at the SEC East, sitting at 3-0. Newby has excelled under new head coach Soluna, and looks to be one of the possible SEC Offensive Players of the Year at the end of the season. Player of the Season (so far) - RB Ethan Newby, 78 carries for 446 yards, 7 TDs, 0 FUM (5.72 ypc) Question Going Forward - Can Newby sustain this? Its been a lot of carries for Newby, a conference high 78. Can he handle this heavy workload, or is he going to wear out as the season goes along? Georgia Bulldogs Scoring Woes - Georgia's defense this season is nowhere as good as their historically great ones from 2019 and 2018. However the issue remains the same: can this Bulldogs team score enough to win? The bulk of this responsibility lies with senior QB Salvatore Tanner. He'll need to play really well as the season goes on. Player of the Season (so far) - RB Isaac Wilson, 62 carries for 269 yards, 4 TDs, 0 FUM (4.34 ypc) Question Going Forward - Is Salvatore Tanner good enough? Frankly speaking, Tanner has been the weak link for the Bulldogs all 3 years. People just aren't respecting this Bulldog passing game. If Tanner can step it up, find Ja'Wuan Howard more often, then Georgia is right there as an SEC contender. Kentucky Wildcats Starting to find their Rabid-legs - The Wildcats do not have the most talented roster, but for their key guys, Rabid has gotten the best out of them. Elijah McManus responded well to his game 1 benching, and senior linebacker Abdoul Gordon has been a machine on defense. The revelation of the year has been Quinn Walters, one of the most dangerous weapons in the SEC. Player of the Season (so far) - WR Quinn Walters, 23 receptions for 294 yards, 2 TDs (12.78 ypr) Question Going Forward - Just how much noise can they make this year? This Kentucky team showed that they have firepower in the big win against Cincinnati. Can they pull off some upsets in their conference slate? Rabid has this team feeling the chip on their shoulder, and I think they can make a big impact this season. LSU Tigers Title Contenders on a Roll - This team is starting to ball out, especially in a huge beat down of Ole Miss this week. Elias Allen-Hollis and Alexander Burton are back to their superstar form, and the supporting cast is just as deadly. This team is absolutely terrifying. I should know, I've already played them. Player of the Season (so far) - RB Jayden Huff, 67 carries for 395 yards, 6 TDs, 0 FUM (5.90 ypc) Question Going Forward - Nothing. They've already shown they can grind out games and blow teams out. Just keep doing what you're doing Tigers. Missouri Tigers Its Tucker Dowden Time - Dowden has faced his share of criticism, but those have disappeared in 2020. Dowden has been indefatigable, with an astounding 198 passer rating after three games. Dowden is the type of player that can take Missouri to the promised land of the playoffs just like Aaron Shea did a few years ago. This team is going to be a threat in the SEC East. Player of the Season (so far) - QB Tucker Dowden, 57 of 78 (73.08%) for 885 yards, 7 TDs, 0 INTs (198.00 passer rating). 20 carries for 148 yards, 2 TDs, 0 FUM (7.40 ypc). Question Going Forward - Where has FS Jamal Barnes been? One of Mizzou's best players last season just hasn't done enough through the opening 3 games. When the Tiger's best defender has been true freshman David Triplett, we just need to see more out of the veterans. Give Dowden a chance to win and he'll take it. Mississippi State Bulldogs Yet Another Strong Team - Aside from a big defeat at the hands of Heisman favorite Nico Kaufman and the Air Force Falcons, the Bulldogs have looked very strong. Ryder Shipman to Ryan Childs is deadly as ever, and Brady Christiansen is one of the top linebackers in the country. Player of the Season (so far) - OLB Brady Christiansen, 17 tackles, 1 INT Question Going Forward - Run the Ball? The Bulldogs have had a rough start on the ground with DeAndre Dyson leading the charge. Simply put, he just hasn't been good enough. The fanbase would like to see Clanga get more pass-heavy, its yet to be seen if Coach Duncan will oblige. Ole Miss Rebels We Go as Marquise Laws Goes - Two wins to start the season where Laws looked like a great QB, then a rough performance out of Laws when they dropped one to LSU, frankly one of the best teams in the nation. This team has firepower, veteran leadership, and talented defenders. Unfortunately, they just happen to be in one of the toughest divisions football has to offer. Player of the Season (so far) - TE Hunter King, 18 receptions for 290 yards, 3 TDs (16.11 ypr) Question Going Forward - Strength of Schedule? Laws and the Rebels looked awesome early on, but those teams were pretty bad. Is Laws actually that good, or did he get lucky with that bad schedule. This will get answered soon as the Rebels start getting into the meat of their conference slate. South Carolina Gamecocks Tough SEC Start - 2 SEC games out of their first 3 is rough for any team. Even more nervewracking is that these are Hagan's first games as head coach. He's obviously still working out the kinks with his roster, but results have been quietly promising. South Carolina was fantastic against UMass, but it was UMass. Player of the Season (so far) - WR Sean McDermott,14 receptions for 259 yards, 2 TDs (18.50 ypr) Question Going Forward - Can McDermott get the ball enough? Sean McDermott is the magic man for the Gamecocks. Everytime the ball is in his hands, good things happen for South Carolina. Milo Condon has his struggles but scheming up ways to get McDermott is necessary. Tennessee Volunteers Losing Record? - The Vols haven't had a losing record in SageBow's entire regime. Sitting 1-2 after 3 games is a bitter blow for Big Orange Nation. Can the Vols right the ship, or did they simply lose too much in 2019? There's been good moments for the Vols, but after the second half shutout the USF Bulls pitched this weekend, there's a lot to see how Coach Sage analyzes the performance of his team so far. Player of the Season (so far) - DE Eric Jamison, 12 tackles, 4.5 sacks, 1 safety Question Going Forward - Where the Veterans at? Some of the Vols best players have been freshmen (QB Adrian Goldson and ILB Marcus Coles). It begs the question, what is Nathaniel Jeffries and the rest of the senior doing? Texas A&M Aggies Jarvis Fucking Ward - The Junior Receiver is unstoppable so far this season, torching every team the Aggies play against. He's nearly 50% of this team's entire offense, and he's got the fans in College Station ecstatic. Player of the Season (so far) - WR Jarvis Ward, 25 receptions for 378 yards, 5 TDs (15.12 ypr) Question Going Forward - Just keep developing. No this isn't a question, this is simply what the Aggies need to do. Nathan Singletary is a freshman quarterback, and while he's been good getting the ball to Jarvis Ward, everything else needs to get better. Vanderbilt Commodores Defensive Juggernaut - Jordan Tucker, Damian Dailey, Adam Lovelace, all of these guys have been unstoppable for the Commodores through 3 games. Can anyone break the breach? Cause it doesn't seem anyone can. Player of the Season (so far) - OLB Damian Dailey, 17 tackles, 1 INT, 2 sacks Question Going Forward - Is Justin Malloy good enough? The signal caller for the Black and Gold has arguably the worst quarterback in the conference. Kareem McGee has done really well to make things happen for this offense and with a defense this good, they don't need to score a lot. They just need to score. What did I get right? What did I get wrong? Please feel free to comment your own thoughts below!
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    "King Me" By A.J. Jefferson I remember exactly how I felt the day I announced I was going to play football for North Carolina. It was the day things really started kicking off for me. Don't get me wrong, I had been dealing with attention since someone found out I could throw a football 40 yards with a perfect spiral in 5th grade. There were articles leading up to my decision about how I was going to change the game forever. People were already saying that A.J. Jefferson is a surefire multiple Heisman winner. One article gave me the nickname "TD Jesus" a name that to this day I can not live down. But when I went up in front of those cameras, and told the world that this Georgia boy was headed to North Carolina to play quarterback, the gloves came off. I was no longer a protected high school phenom, I was now the savior of a college program and the hottest topic in the nation. I don't know how to describe what it is like at 18 years old to turn on ESPN and see the talking heads talking about you. It's even harder to describe what it is like to see them talking about how you are going to be the best quarterback in college football history. I hadn't even left Georgia yet, and I was already the Heisman front runner. When I was home, I had a safety net. My parents kept me grounded, my friends knew how to keep me in check, and I was able to tune out the talk for the most part. But when I packed up and moved to North Carolina, I no longer had anyone there to cut through the bullshit. I had Bo Woodall, who has been my best friend for as long as I can remember. (We were teammates before I moved to Parkview my Freshman year of high school). But if I am being honest, Bo did more harm then good. You see, Bo is a talker. Every day he would go on and on about how we were going to be the best duo of all time and no one could stop us. The world was our oyster and we were just getting started. Every day, I would walk down the street and people would come up to me just to get a look in, I was treated like a god. I won the starting job early on in OTAs, so I never really got that chance to have to take the back seat either. I'd like to pretend that I was some humble kid who took everything in stride and didn't feed my own hype, but that just wouldn't be the truth. I LOVED IT. Every second of every day I felt like I was literally the greatest thing out there. And how could I not? My new friends, teammates, random people on the street, people on tv, everyone was telling me that. TD Jesus. That was my name. people barely called me A.J. any more. I was a king. Then, I went and did maybe the worst thing possible: I played awesome in my debut. 364 yards and 5 touchdowns. I had lived up to the hype. I was everything they thought I was and more. I was TD Jesus. Except that I wasn't. The rest of the year was kind of iffy. I threw tons of TDs, I threw tons of yards, but I also threw tons of INTs. This is about the time I learned that the same people who can build you up, can tear you down to new lows you never knew existed. I became the most polarizing player in the nation. You either loved me or hated me. Was I TD Jesus? Or, was I the false prophet INT Jesus? This was the debate that I heard non stop for the next three years of college. I guess it might be a good thing that my ego was so big, because I still felt like I was on top of the world. I still believed that I was the best player in the country and that the Heisman voting was rigged against me. My real friends tried to tell me that I was becoming a real jerk. Bo even started mentioning that I needed to chill out about myself but of course, I didn't listen. Why should I? I was going to be the #1 pick in the NFLHC Draft because that's what everyone was telling me. Until I started hearing rumors that the Chicago Bears were going to pick Norris Brookshear. I couldn't believe it. Norris Brookshear? I was 10x better than he was on his best day. "The stats didn't show the whole story" is what I would tell myself. I was a gunslinger, you can't measure that. Well, the draft came along and we all know how that went. Brookshear went first, I went second to the defending super bowl champions who just got rid of their starting QB. Almost immediately, I became the worst pick ever. You know how shocking that is? To be so full of yourself that you think you are basically invincible, have most of the media telling you that you are great throughout your college career, and then in one instant, you become a total joke. It hit my pride hard. I searched for hours and hours after the draft to just find one article saying I was a great pick. The best I could find was "I think it will work out." How did I go from TD Jesus to "I think it will work out"? It destroys the soul to hear that you're all hype. That you have no talent, and that your whole career has been contrived. This is usually the part of the story where the hero gets redeemed, turns his attitude around, and has a great career. But that is not what happened with me. With no real close friends anymore to help me out, I failed at handling the negative media. I doubled down on my own hubris and continued to tell myself that I was still the best around and that the media was trying to take me down because I was the guy. Then I struggled heavily in my rookie season and the negative attention increased. Thank god for Bo Woodall. He deserves all of the credit for pulling me out of the hole I had built myself into. I was hanging with the wrong crowd. Being out and partying became the only thing I could do to get the negative media out of my head. I was obsessed with my image, and the girls and guys at the clubs fed my ego. One day, a night before practice actually, I was planning on going out on the town again. But that is when Bo barged into my room and blocked me from leaving. He made me sit down, looked me in the eyes, and said "I miss my best friend." He told me the man I have become is not the A.J. he grew up with in Georgia. We talked for hours that night, I don't know how long, but it was basically until we had to leave for practice the next morning. We talked about the good old days in our youth, our hot start in college, and how much fun the game used to be. And that is how I realized that football had stopped being fun for me. I know longer enjoyed that game I had devoted my life to. I broke down, told him I couldn't handle the negative attention I had been getting since I came to the NFL and he reminded me that I didn't handle the positive attention very well either. Everything he said was true, and he made me see that. I owe Bo everything, he saved me at my lowest point, and made me see how stupid I had been. It's a battle everyday, I am not going to pretend I am a completely different person now. I still struggle with the same things I have been struggling with, but at least now I can see that what I have been doing is foolish. That I am not some great hero, I am just another guy trying to make it in the league. I have done nothing to warrant being praised as TD Jesus and if I want to get to that level I need to make some changes. It's a long road, and a journey that will never end. But at least I get to take that journey with my best friend.
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    Game Recap: Week 2 Players of the Week: Offense: WR Luke Cobb, Florida State - 18 catches for 270 yards, 4 TDs (69-7 win over UMass) *Side note: I try not to do back-to-back winners, but Cobb tied a conference record with 4 touchdowns and was one reception short of the conference record of 19, set by Mosi Bartos in 2015. **Benjamin Schuler was also a candidate after tying the conference record of 7 touchdowns, shared with Nick Hall (Cuse 2013) and A.J. Jefferson (UNC 2015). Defense: OLB Jack Ramsey, Florida State - 1 sack, 7 tackles (69-7 win over UMass) Special Teams: P Steven Tomlinson, Georgia Tech - 43.5 punting average (21-30 loss to #8 Alabama) FNF: Charlotte, NC: North Carolina Tar Heels (0-1) - 47, Charlotte 49ers (0-1) - 21 Max Laws has gotten much better. Somehow, someway, the worst QB of the 2019 season is among the best this season so far. Laws took over the game against the 49ers, throwing for 331 yards and 4 touchdowns to give the Heels a much-needed first victory. He looked somewhat decent against Texas Tech too, despite that game being an absolute wash. 2019 Max Laws might return in the near future, but the Heels are gonna enjoy 2020 Max Laws for as long as they can. Isaiah Peko rebounds. Granted, this was Charlotte, but this was a way better performance than his 11 for 33 debut against the Red Raiders. With 88 yards on 19 carries, Peko averaged a devastating 4.63 yards per carry and found his way to the endzone for the first time in his career, giving Laws all the help he could get on the ground. It was a stylistic balance that the Heels could thrive off of in games against the lower half of the ACC. Is Jeremy Patterson the best receiving target on the offense? Laws' favorite target so far, Patterson has 176 yards on 15 catches and 2 touchdowns in these opening two games, being tied for third in the conference in receiving yards (leading all tight ends). We knew UNC's receivers would be a huge problem going into the season, but the senior''s quick emergence in the passing game might provide the Heels with an actual threat in bigger games. Performance rating: 8/10. Much better look for North Carolina this week, albeit against a much worse opponent. The offense did a quick 180 from last week, but the defense still raises some questions after a mixed performance against true freshman Chris Billings. Blacksburg, VA: Eastern Michigan Eagles (0-1) - 24, Virginia Tech Hokies (0-0) - 35 Mixed reviews in Ralph Westfall's first game. To put it simply, Westfall was rather average against a relatively easy opponent in Eastern Michigan. The senior man under center completed only 16 of his 30 passes for just 199 yards, but he found the endzone twice and didn't turn it over. On the ground, he was largely ineffective, being bottled up for the most part in a 9-yard performance, though he did score himself. Westfall scoring three times is fine; everything else though was simply bland. Run defense needs help. Between running back Jamel Jamison and quarterback Giovanni Shaw, the Hokies gave up an average of 5.29 yards per carry. The Eagles gave Tech all they could handle for about three and a half quarters, and their ability to run it on this Hokie defense is a large part in their resilience. This won't fly in conference play; the Hokies have to be better prepared to stop the run/ Is the pass rush capable of stepping up in bigger games? The Hokies' front seven did a solid job of applying pressure to Giovanni Shaw, sacking the Eagles' QB twice while forcing him into several bad throws. It was a nice performance against an offensive line they should have dominated; can they keep it up next week in a crucial clash with Pittsburgh? Performance rating: 6/10. This honestly was closer than it should've been, and Westfall's performance exemplifies that. They'll have to do better offensively, and their defense has to contain Pittsburgh's vaunted run. Saturday Morning: Tallahassee, FL: Massachusetts Minutemen (0-0) - 7, #10 Florida State Seminoles (1-0) - 69 A record-setting day for the offense. As stated in our POTW section, Benjamin Schuler tied a conference record for touchdowns with 7. Luke Cobb set a school record with 18 receptions and tied the conference record with 4 touchdowns. UMass was as hapless as expected, but the 'Noles did not let up at all. It was a sight to behold. Painful running game will cost the 'Noles. 10. That's the number of running plays the Seminoles have called over the course of their two games. The 'Noles are so one-sided on offense, currently tops in the conference (and possibly the country) in pass-to-run ratio (118:10). It won't cost them against teams like UMass, but if they come across anyone with a solid secondary, or if Cobb has an off game, Florida State might find themselves in trouble without any presence on the ground. Defense quiet yet explosive. The numbers defensively are solid, holding Douglas Weaver to 4.16 yards per carry, dominating the Minutemen's poor offensive line, and holding UMass to 0-13 on third down. However, individual stats don't portray such a dominant performance. The 'Noles aren't afraid to get down and dirty, and that'll certainly help in games against tougher/more physical opponents (Duke, Florida, and Clemson pop to mind). Performance rating: 9/10. As much as I dislike the imbalance in Florida State's defense, this was about as dominant a performance as you'll see this season. The 'Noles breeze through the easiest part of their schedule; now comes conference play. Durham, NC: Western Michigan Broncos (1-0) - 30, Duke Blue Devils (1-0) - 33 (2OT) Thompson finds his groove. After a relatively poor passing game against BYU, the freshman quarterback vastly improved against a talented Bronco secondary, throwing for 235 yards and 2 scores on 21 for 34 passing and, most importantly, no interceptions. His ground game was good enough yet again, but the difference in the air between the BYU game and this game is outstanding. Defense not great but good enough. The Devils could've done better against Madison, but the Bronco running back is a monster to handle in himself, and given the opponent, holding him to 105 yards on 24 carries isn't half bad, although the 2 scores hurts. Duke made life difficult for Chase Sims, sacking him twice and picking him off twice more, and while Sims as still able to relatively move the ball in the air, Duke was able to make enough plays to ultimately stall out WMU in double OT. Reasons to believe. This was a huge game for Duke in their quest to make their first ever bowl game. With winnable non-conference games against Tulane and UNLV, and with very winnable conference games against UNC, Wake Forest, and Miami (FL), Duke has leeway to potentially drop any of those games and still make a bowl game. A lot of good things came out of this though, and Duke should be a worthy contender in their games against Pittsburgh and Virginia. Performance rating: 8/10. A three-point win in double OT against a team from the MAC might garner some very low ratings in a certain other conference, but against a very tough Western Michigan side, Duke ground out a huge victory, both physically and mentally. If Duke can improve on games like this, it's not out of the realm of possibility for the Blue Devils to compete for the division crown. Saturday Afternoon: Champaign, IL: Louisville Cardinals (0-0) - 9, #7 Illinois Fighting Illini (1-0) - 24 Dockery's debut brings mixed results, but it's not the basis to go on. 92 yards on 24 carries without finding the endzone isn't the best performance, but against a defense as dominant as Illinois', this is perfectly acceptable for a debut. Louisville might have themselves a pretty good running back in Dockery, although we need to see him put up the numbers that will make us believe he can carry what has always been an average-at-best offense. Rough opener for Steele. I called it in the preview, but Steele looked helpless against the Illini. The offensive line was essentially mugged, leaving Steele vulnerable for most of the game, getting sacked three times and being forced into awkward throws - three of which were picked off. A lot of this can be contributed to just how good the Illini are on defense, but there's always cause for concern when your quarterback can't get enough time to throw the ball. Defense holds their own despite exhaustion. Louisville didn't keep the ball often, making only three drives that amounted to anything important. The defense was able to overcome fatigue from being on the field way longer than the offense, performing valiantly against Jamari Nixon's arm (19 for 32, 199 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT). Ali Hester didn't get much going on the ground, although he was able to make a few key drive-extending plays that ultimately doomed the Cards. Performance rating: 5/10. You could argue worse given the numbers, but I liked what I saw from Louisville's defense and DeSean Dockery in his debut. Passing game should improve seeing as the toughest secondary remaining is Clemson, and Dockery should find way more space to show off his top-notch speed. No need to worry, Louisville. Iowa City, IA: Boston College Eagles (0-0) - 20, Iowa Hawkeyes (0-1) - 38 Defense no cause for panic, but cause for concern. Lots of questions were raised about the Eagles' defense after their trip to Iowa City as they allowed Mikeal Black to complete 21 of his 29 passes for 245 yards while allowing Black and Nathaniel Donaldson to find the endzone three times on the ground. The defense was unable to pressure Black throughout most of the game, and the front seven was relatively helpless in stopping big run plays. It's not a disastrous performance from the defense by any means, but it's definitely something to worry about moving forward. A struggle for receivers. Whether it's the adaptation needed for BC's newest group of receivers or Donte Pickett just having an off game, the normally hyped passing game for the Eagles was rather lacking in this one. It'll take a while for the offense to adapt, making Zahir Watts that much more important a player. How much will Zahir have to carry? Again, I don't think performances like this should cause widespread panic, especially considering it's week one. That said, it's obvious that Watts still looked fresh as a returning starter, going for 114 yards on 24 carries. If the passing game keeps at this poor-ish pace, will Zahir have to carry more and more of the workload? Wait before overreacting, but it's something to think about in the near future. Performance rating: 4/10. I give Johns to first-game jitters from BC's new offensive starters, but it was poor from the first-timers throughout this game. Defense looked weak in a few areas, leaving lots of room for improvement this season. They have the talent to compete for the division, but BC have to figure out the offense. Saturday Evening: Morgantown, WV: Pittsburgh Panthers (0-0) - 44, West Virginia Mountaineers (0-0) - 33 The Scramblin' Panthers took flight. Pittsburgh seems to have decided to revert back to their trademark aerial game, with Grant McConnell throwing 39 times as opposed to Jaeden Daniel running the ball 14 times (McConnell did not take the ball on the ground surprisingly). It definitely seems the way to go after putting up 44 points on a solid Mountaineer defense, especially given that Daniel still found the endzone twice. Poor defensive play or great offense from WVU? It's no secret that West Virginia's offense is among the best offenses in the country. J.C Weldon has grown into his own after a rough opening games in Morgantown, and Mohammed Foster looked all but a Heisman candidate after a phenomenal performance. Pittsburgh simply couldn't keep up with Weldon, and Foster was an absolute beats both in the air and on the ground. Mohamed Mustafa also looked great against Pitt's front seven, which had taken some hits due to graduation at the end of 2019. It's not a great start for the Pitt defense, but they won't play many offenses as scary as this one. No pass rush whatsoever. Losing Michael McBride in the offseason definitely hurt, and it showed as Pittsburgh put next to no pressure on Foster. The front seven recorded just one sack and had few hurries, hence allowing Foster to either make standard throws or to simply get outside the pocket and take it downfield. This can and will be a big problem down the line if it can't be fixed. Performance rating: 7/10. Offense gets a very good grade out of this game, coming up big when the defense faltered. Huge road win against a very good rival could lead to very promising things to a promising team. Tuscaloosa, AL: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (1-0) - 21, #8 Alabama Crimson Tide (0-0) - 30 Jackets lose, but Beckett gets revenge. It was a dreadful performance last year in Atlanta for Beckett, but he took it to the Tide in T-Town. Beckett only threw one interception this time as opposed to three last season, and the young quarterback completed 24 of his 38 passes for 280 yards and found the endzone 3 times (as opposed to none in a 30-0 loss last year). Beckett was able to spread the ball around often, proving to be a much larger pain for Bama. Pass defense can't keep up. The Yellow Jackets allowed two receivers to reel in 90+ yards on the day. A.J. Edwards is obviously a talented player at the receiver position, but giving up a yard short of a hundred to Lamont McLeod, the Bama tight end, can only spell disaster to a defense that will likely struggle this year in that department. It clearly wasn't a good day for the Tech secondary. Jackets came out with fire, but got extinguished. Georgia Tech went into T-Town upset minded, and it clearly showed in the first half. Tech outplayed Bama, leading at the half by a score of 21-10. That fire seemed to go out early on in the second half, as the Yellow Jackets played similar to how they played in Atlanta last season. Bama outscored Tech 20-0 in the second half to win the game, but the first half performance was valiant. Performance rating: 6/10. Solid road performance against a top ten team. Offense continues to look good while the defense desperately needs some help. Might not be a problem if Beckett and Co. can outscore their opponents though. Raleigh, NC: #12 Washington State Cougars (1-0) - 49, NC State Wolfpack (0-1) - 6 Many reasons to worry offensively. Going into ImposterCauster's initial season with the Pack, everyone knew that Blake Fry was a project. 15 games later, he's still 100% a project, opening the season with two nasty games, albeit against two Top 15 sides. Still, a 0:5 TD-interception ratio is absolutely horrid, and his legs don't come close to make up for it. Keith Harley isn't nearly good enough to make up for this, and the receiving game lacks that reliable playmaker or easy target for Fry. Questions have to be answered, and they have to be answered soon. Kamari Cheatham's lowest moment. Not many receivers had done too much against Cheatham in his time with the Pack, but he simply could not keep pace with Elijah Talley. There are worse receivers to get beaten by for sure, but Talley flat out embarrassed the cornerback with 10 catches for 140 yards, with two of those catches going for scores. Cheatham has to mop up his game and fast; Cobb and Josiah McCray lurk around the corner. Isaac Holley? The defensive tackle looked like the best player on a sloppy defense last season, consistently breaking through offensive lines and putting pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Two games in, however, and he's yet to really be a presence in the backfield, as has the entire defensive line. Holley has been relatively tame up the middle alongside Emmanuel McDermott, and he have to wonder if the switch to a 4-3 has a large impact on that. Performance rating: 1/10. The first 1 of the season simply as a result of timing. NC State had just returned home from Ann Arbor after a hard-fought loss to Michigan, and this is how they follow it up? The results speak for itself; the Pack have to get back on their feet (paws?) against Rice. Stat Leaders Passing Yards: QB Benjamin Schuler - 900 yards QB Max Laws - 611 yards QB Josh Beckett - 580 yards Completion Percentage: QB Christian Coates - 70.00% QB Benjamin Schuler - 67.80% QB Grant McConnell - 66.67% Passing Touchdowns: QB Benjamin Schuler - 12 QB Josh Beckett - 5 QB Max Laws - 4 Interceptions: QB Blake Fry - 5 QB Benjamin Schuler - 3 QB Ayden Steele - 3 QB Rating: QB Christian Coates - 174.28 QB Benjamin Schuler - 160.34 QB Grant McConnell - 151.54 Rushing Yards: RB Keith Harley - 163 RB Christian Collins - 157 RB Isaiah Peko - 121 Rushing Touchdowns: QB Bryce Thompson - 4 4 tied with 2 ( , , , ) Receiving Yards: WR Luke Cobb - 409 WR Anthony Swanson - 202 2 tied with 176 ( , ) Receiving Touchdowns: WR Luke Cobb - 6 WR Nicolas Singer - 3 3 tied with 2 ( , , ) Tackles: OLB Calvin Rudolph - 13 DT Mohamed Caldwell - 12 2 tied with 11 ( , ) Sacks: DE Omar Vasquez - 2 DE Nicholas Gonzales - 2 Many tied with 1
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    Episode twelve of Kafka's All-Time CFBHC Team A note on selections: Statistics, team accomplishments, individual awards, and gut instinct were all used to determine the best all-time team in CFBHC history. Because this is only CFBHC, I tried not to let NFLHC performance sway me one way or another. Perhaps the hardest part of this list was comparing players who only played for one or two seasons as opposed to four-year veteran starters. I did my best. Enjoy. CB Keyshawn Thompson, Michigan State 2013-2014 Stats 2014 - 36 tackles, 7 INT, TD 2013 - 43 tackles, 4 INT, sack, 2 TD CAREER - 79 tackles, 11 INT, sack, 3 TD CAREER - 2 punt return TD Accomplishments Team Chick-Fil-A Bowl Champions (2014) Individual 2x Jim Thorpe Award (2013-2014) 2x All-American (2013-2014) Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year (2014) 2x All-Big Ten (2013-2014) CFBHC Hall of Fame Inductee Miscellaneous First player to win multiple Jim Thorpe Awards First defensive back to 2x All-American Helped lead Michigan State to single-greatest turnaround in CFBHC history (2-10 to 12-1) 2nd place in interceptions (2014) Two games against rival Michigan: 13 tackles, 2 INT, TD Best statistical game: 2013 vs. Michigan: 10 tackles, INT, TD INT in three straight games twice INT in back-to-back games thrice Keyshawn Thompson took CFBHC by storm the moment he stepped on campus in East Lansing. His two-year career resulted in two Jim Thorpe Awards, two All-American teams, one Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, and one of the great comeback stories in history. Michigan State had in incredible 10-win improvement from 2013 to 2014, due in no small part to Thompson. He was also the top return man in 2014, taking two punts back for touchdowns. When naming famous corners in CFBHC history, he's likely the first on your list. CB Mike Gradishar, Alabama 2014-2016 Stats 2016 - 28 tackles, 8 INT 2015 - 25 tackles, 6 INT, TD 2014 - 27 tackles, 8 INT, 3 TD CAREER - 80 tackles, 22 INT, 4 TD Accomplishments Team National Championship (2014) 2x SEC Championship (2014, 2016) Rose Bowl Champions (2014) CFBHC Semifinalist (2016) Land of 10,000 Lakes Bowl Champions (2015) Individual 2x All-American (2014, 2016) SEC Defensive Player of the Year (2016) Miscellaneous Only defensive back to be All-American in non-consecutive years Most interceptions in a three-year span Only player with 8+ interceptions in multiple years 2x led nation in interceptions (2014, 2016) One of two players with 8+ INT and 3+ TD in a single season Interception in three straight games three times Best statistical game: 2014 vs. Mississippi State - 4 tackles, 2 INT, TD Mike Gradishar was a lock-down corner for the Crimson Tide, helping lead them to two SEC Championships and the 2014 National Title. He's the only player with multiple 8+ interception seasons and his 2014 campaign was one of the best of any defensive back in history. He recorded an interception in three straight games on three separate occasions and came down with a crucial pick in the 2014 CFBHC National Championship Game. Roll tide, roll. Other contenders: Laurent Christensen (Army), Dan Weaver (Purdue), Troy Marshall (Texas), Jacoby Seaverns (Oklahoma) Next episode: FS
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    .tg {border-collapse:collapse;border-spacing:0;} .tg td{font-family:Arial, sans-serif;font-size:14px;padding:10px 5px;border-style:solid;border-width:1px;overflow:hidden;word-break:normal;} .tg th{font-family:Arial, sans-serif;font-size:14px;font-weight:normal;padding:10px 5px;border-style:solid;border-width:1px;overflow:hidden;word-break:normal;} .tg .tg-uqo3{background-color:#efefef;text-align:center;vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-baqh{text-align:center;vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-yzt1{background-color:#efefef;vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-xgyj{font-weight:bold;font-style:italic;font-size:18px;background-color:#9b9b9b;color:#ffffff;vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-5frq{font-style:italic;text-align:center;vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-jogk{font-style:italic;vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-yw4l{vertical-align:top} .tg .tg-yvo5{background-color:#656565;vertical-align:top} Coaches Poll Top 25 Rk Team Rec Pts Trend 1 Penn State Nittany Lions (6) 1-0 244 -- 2 USC Trojans (3) 1-0 238 -- 3 LSU Tigers 1-0 228 -- 4 Clemson Tigers (1) 1-0 204 -- 5 Purdue Boilermakers* 0-0 204 -- 6 Auburn Tigers 1-0 202 ↑1 7 Illinois Fighting Illini 1-0 178 ↑3 8 Alabama Crimson Tide 0-0 173 ↓2 9 Michigan Wolverines 1-0 167 ↓2 10 Florida State Seminoles 1-0 141 ↑4 11 Tennessee Volunteers 0-0 126 -- 12 Washington State Cougars** 1-0 118 ↓3 13 SMU Mustangs*** 0-0 118 ↓1 14 Air Force Falcons 0-0 111 ↑2 15 Mississippi State Bulldogs 0-0 105 ↓2 16 Vanderbilt Commodores 1-0 96 ↑8 17 Georgia Bulldogs 1-0 94 -- 18 Minnesota Golden Gophers 1-0 74 ↑3 19 Wisconsin Badgers 1-0 71 -- 20 Kansas Jayhawks**** 0-0 61 -- 21 Arizona Wildcats***** 0-0 61 ↓3 22 Baylor Bears 1-0 56 ↓7 23 Maryland Terrapins 1-0 44 ↑2 24 Virginia Cavaliers 1-0 26 N/A 25 UCF Knights 1-0 19 N/A Dropped from Rankings: Oregon (22), Oklahoma (23) Others receiving votes: Missouri (13), West Virginia (13), USF (9), Virginia Tech (9), Pittsburgh (8), Oklahoma State (7), TCU (7), Indiana (6), Oregon (6), Michigan State (5), Ohio State (4), Texas (4), California (2), NC State (2), Nebraska (1) *Purdue's highest ranking is 4th **Washington State's highest ranking is 8th ***SMU's highest ranking is 12th ****Kansas's highest ranking is 9th *****Arizona's highest ranking is 14th
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    NO ONE MAY SUBMIT A RESPONSE. Ryan Frey, defensive end for the Eagles, recently appeared for an interview on Sirius XM's The Blitz to talk about his involvement, along with several other Eagles' players, in local community projects. "I'd like to call on Eagles fans to come out to their local Habitat for Humanity on Saturday and help provide supplies or skilled work constructing houses for the less privileged. I will be there along with Allan (Taylor), Cameron (Whelahan), Jack (Green), and DeAndre (Hawkins)," Frey said during the interview. "I will also be inviting thirty children from social welfare programs to come attend the next Eagles' home game as my personal guests of honor. They'll be allowed to come on the field during pre-game warmups and will each receive football gear and an invite to our summer football camp." Ryan Frey has gained +5% fitness, the Eagles have gained +4% media standing, and Allan Taylor, Cameron Whelahan, Jack Green, DeAndre Hawkins have gained +2% fitness.
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    Welcome to Kafka's Midseason NFLHC Honors & Awards All Midseason NFLHC Team Executive of the Year inspiral, Green Bay Packers Coach of the Year inspiral, Green Bay Packers Most Valuable Player Jason Johnson, QB - Green Bay Packers Pepsi Rookie of the Year Tyler Jones, DE - Tennessee Titans Offensive Rookie of the Year Curtis Henry, TE - Carolina Panthers Defensive Rookie of the Year Tyler Jones, DE - Tennessee Titans Walter Payton Man of the Year Alex Martin, ILB - Oakland Raiders Playoff predictions NFC 1. Los Angeles Rams 2. Dallas Cowboys 3. Green Bay Packers 4. Carolina Panthers 5. Detroit Lions 6. Atlanta Falcons 4 Panthers > 5 Lions 3 Packers > 6 Falcons 1 Rams > 4 Panthers 3 Packers > 2 Cowboys 1 Rams > 3 Packers ------- AFC 1. New York Jets 2. Jacksonville Jaguars 3. Oakland Raiders 4. Cleveland Browns 5. Indianapolis Colts 6. Miami Dolphins 5 Colts > 4 Browns 3 Raiders > 6 Dolphins 1 Jets > 5 Colts 2 Jaguars > 3 Raiders 2 Jaguars > 1 Jets SUPER BOWL Rams > Jaguars
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    So youre telling me the sim now has its own versions of the Choke At Doak?
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    For most of the conference, this is the final week of non-conference play, and the last chance to get right before the football gods before the games start to mean even more. For Oklahoma and Texas Tech, though, it's the conference opener and the first chance to take a step toward a championship. For every member of the nation's most exciting conference, it's a game week. This is the only bye-free week, and that means a deep, diverse slate of nine games. We have rivalries renewed, we have offensive duels, we have defensive slugfests, and we have matchup dreams. Without further ado, let's talk about the games. Thursday Night Texas A&M (0-2) at Texas (2-0) Texas has had two shots at Texas A&M over the years, both coming in College Station. They fell both times. Now, the Longhorns get a shot at the hated Aggies in Austin, and undefeated Texas has some pent-up revenge to collect on. These Aggies are dangerous, as the rest of the SEC West could tell you: they nearly rallied from a 21-0 deficit against Ole Miss (but lost 38-35), and they led Alabama for most of the game (but lost 28-26). The Aggie offense relies heavily on one man: the 5-foot-9 former Juco star Jarvis Ward has been one of the nation's best so far, racking up 20 catches for 308 yards and all 5 of his team's receiving touchdowns in just two games. Texas's secondary has looked vintage so far, holding Boise State and Oregon to 56% passing with 1 combined touchdown against 4 combined interceptions. Ward's emergence, though, makes this the biggest challenge to the Longhorn secondary yet. When Damani Jeffries is covering him, Texas feels confident. When Devon Braxton rotates over to him, things are more interesting--Braxton has all the talent in the world and picked off Jason Baum last week, but Jeffries is the steadier of the two. Texas's depth in the secondary is still thinner than they'd like, but Nathan Singletary has relied almost exclusively on Ward rather than bother going through his progressions. Cover Ward, get pressure on Singletary, force him into tough throws, and Texas A&M's offense will grind to a halt. (Note: this is easier said than done.) On offense, look for Kyler Tackett to shine. Tackett has been completing 70.9% of his passes so far, and Texas A&M's secondary has been beaten up over the first couple of weeks. Ole Miss tight end Hunter King went for 145 yards and two scores, and Alabama put two receivers over the century mark. The Aggie secondary is essentially as deep as Julian Woods, and that's an opportunity for Abdoul Causey on the outside and Steven Maloney underneath. Texas A&M's strength on their defense is their line, and that's going to give them a chance against a young Texas offensive line. And until proven otherwise, Jarvis Ward is a tactical nuke in a 5-9 body. But other than that, all signs point to Texas being the deeper, more talented, more technically skilled team, and they will have the edge at home. Texas 27, Texas A&M 17 TCU (0-2) at Rice (1-1) With one Texas-on-Texas fight taking place in the capital, we slide over to the state's largest city for the other one. TCU is still looking for their first win of the season--and more importantly, they're looking for an end to a drought that has now reached 14 losses in 17 games. They hit the road to take on Rice, a team they beat 31-27 last year in Fort Worth--but the Owls have been dangerous against power-5 competition this season so far. They took Kansas to overtime on the road before keeping North Carolina State out of the endzone in a 17-9 win. If TCU wants to get their first win of the season, key number one, two, and three comes down to three words: stop Eric McLean. The Owls have scored 5 touchdowns this season, and all 5 came on the arm of McLean. The offense has gained 711 yards, and 595 of those have come on the arm of Eric McLean. That's a problem for TCU based on early returns: Jamel Armstrong and Andre Webb threw for 309 yards apiece, 5 combined touchdowns to 1 interception, and a 64.6% combined completion rate. New starting cornerbacks Roman Blackmon and William Cooper are still settling in, and facing two powerful passing attacks hasn't helped. Unfortunately for them, this is no reprieve. Rice's threat is primarily from McLean; he makes his receivers look better and knows how to spread the ball out, but none of them are dynamic on their own. That means a disciplined approach is necessary--overloading on one receiver will just mean someone else gets open for McLean to make a play. On offense, TCU will look to find more success in the passing game than they did in their first two games. Sam Milner has completed just 57.4% of his passes so far, averaging 170 yards per game and throwing 3 touchdowns to 3 interceptions. Rice's secondary showed some nice aggression against Kansas by picking off Christian Graham twice, only to let Blake Fry leave turnover-free the following game. But even if Milner's aerial struggles continue, TCU can look to its ground game to carry the effort. Shamar Burroughs is coming off of his second career 110-yard game, and TCU won't be afraid to challenge this Rice defensive line--or even linebacker Andres Arriaga behind them. It's a combination that nearly worked against SMU, but Rice also shut down a similarly designed attack against NC State. This game would not be much of a surprise going either way. But I think this matchup is easier for TCU than the two it had prior, and they'll use that experience to put it all together and get their first win of the season. TCU 31, Rice 23 Friday Night West Virginia (0-2) at Arkansas (1-1) West Virginia's non-conference schedule has been a doozy. But with no relief in sight and the prospect of an 0-3 start staring them in the face, the Mountaineers have no choice but to go on the road and beat Arkansas if they want to win this game. The Razorbacks were last seen throwing the ball all over Baylor in week 2, upsetting the then-#22 Bears 48-44 in double-overtime behind 340 yards and 4 touchdowns from redshirt sophomore Connor Dawson. Slowing down the Flying Pig offense is going to be paramount for West Virginia, who has struggled against the loaded multiple-threat pass offenses of Pittsburgh and Penn State to the tune of 310.5 passing yards allowed per game and a passer rating allowed in the 155.2 range. Arkansas brings exactly that to the table: they've been pass-heavy for years, Dawson's continued the tradition, and he has guys like Tyron Chambers, Noel Lujan, and tight end Dillon Scott to throw to. The good news, though, is that these hogs can be barbecued. Illinois isn't normally the state you'd call on for good ol' pork meat, but the Illini defense got pressure on the Arkansas backfield, held Dawson to 23-45 passing, recorded a pick-six from Damien Norman, and held Arkansas to 6 points in a blowout win. Not even Illinois could stop Tyron Chambers (10 for 120 yards), so let's stipulate that Arkansas's star will get his. If, however, the Mountaineers can limit Noel Lujan and Dillon Scott while keeping Chambers from busting too many big gains, that'll give their offense a chance. Arkansas's defense isn't built to deal with West Virginia's offense. It's secondary-focused and ill-equipped to deal with a dual-threat quarterback. Marcus Swartz threw for 289 yards and rushed for another 63, for example. Robert Bleeker's good in coverage and is certainly being looked at by all sorts of NFL scouts, but he's one guy. If he's assigned to J.C. Weldon, someone still has to cover Elias Langston and Jason Dupree. Someone still has to stay in the box to deal with Mohamed Mustafa or even Mohammed Foster in scramble mode. West Virginia's offense can hit the same weak spots Baylor hit, except that West Virginia can hit them harder. I think that will make up for any matchup issues that the Razorback offense will present, and West Virginia will come out of this one with their first win of the season. West Virginia 37, Arkansas 27 Wyoming (0-2) at Kansas State (2-0) Last year in Manhattan, Troy Tanner and the Wyoming Cowboys gave Kansas State a scare. Tanner rushed for 139 yards and 3 touchdowns, keeping Wyoming in the game until Julien Daly stripped him for the game-winning score in a 38-31 K-State win. Playing host to Wyoming for the second straight year, Kansas State hopes to leave a whole lot less doubt his time around--even without the graduated Daly. Wyoming has struggled in all three phases of the game this year, outscored 107-13 in two games this year. New starting quarterback Jasiah Howard is 23-47 for 218 yards, 1 touchdown, and 5 interceptions so far. Troy Tanner has been okay, rushing 47 times for 195 yards--just over 4.1 yards per carry--but he has yet to reach the endzone through two games. That's a potential area of concern for Kansas State: their run defense is giving up almost as many yards per carry (5.26) as their pass defense allowed per attempt (5.30). But barring another performance similar to what Tanner put on last year, Wyoming's offense doesn't look to have much in the tank. The Wyoming defense hasn't been able to stop a parked car either, giving up 385 passing yards and 4.5 touchdowns per game. Neither Florida State nor Temple bothered to run the ball much. Kansas State won't give Wyoming that kind of predictability: they'll let Elijah Humphrey test the Wyoming front and let Rahim Murrell throw all over the Cowboy secondary. If Wyoming gets into scoring position, don't expect them to close--converting punter Gavin Roy to kicker hasn't worked at all, as he's 2/7 on field goal attempts with a long of 28 yards. Factor in the resignation of their coach (we miss you already, GK) and Kansas State really shouldn't have a problem with this one. Kansas State 38, Wyoming 14 Saturday Afternoon Virginia Tech (1-1) at Oklahoma State (2-0) Chester Brenner has been hot, red-hot to kick off his senior season. Leading the Big XII with 665 yards and 10 touchdowns while maintaining a conference-best completion percentage of 71.2% and a conference-best passer rating of 190.2, there's hardly anything more that Oklahoma State could ask from their signal-caller--other than to keep it up. Now, the Cowboy offense takes on their first P5 opponent of the season, and they'll need Brenner to stay hot. Virginia Tech's done a pretty good job of limiting the pass so far this season, holding Giovanni Shaw of Eastern Michigan to 180 yards but letting Grant McConnell get away with a solid, 291-yard, 2-touchdown game. The Hokies have a young but talented cornerback pair in Lucas Freeman and Trevor McKinney, but the man who makes the secondary tick is strong safety Jonathan Norman. Oklahoma State has a lot of depth at receiver, and Virginia Tech lacks it at basically any non-safety position on defense, so expect the Cowboys to try and turn up the heat while staying fresh themselves. The Hokies might be able to get a bit of pressure from the defensive line, but don't expect a whole bunch of it. It's going to be mostly on the secondary to hold their assignments as long as possible. The defense is going to be the sticking point for Oklahoma State. They gave up 45 points in their opener against Western Kentucky, but then they followed it up by holding Marshall to 10. They've been successful against the run (3.49 YPCA) but have drawn mixed reviews against the pass. The 58.7% completion percentage allowed and the 4-6 TD-INT ratio count as good news; the 12.19 yards allowed per completion qualifies as bad news. Virginia Tech is relatively balanced, but the run game is more threatening. Ralph Westfall really hasn't looked good so far, and none of his receivers are really able to help him out. Maurice Ervin, though, is a possible threat. The converted fullback is averaging more than 4.5 yards per carry and has found paydirt three times already. Oklahoma State's defensive line isn't the best at jamming holes at the line of scrimmage, but the linebackers can still fly around the field to chase down the ballcarrier. This was a blowout loss for Oklahoma State in 2018 and a close win in 2019. I'm expecting the trendline to continue toward a comfortable win in 2020 for the Cowboys. Oklahoma State 34, Virginia Tech 20 Iowa State (1-1) at #16 Minnesota (2-0) The last time Iowa State squared off against Robbie and Robbie, the Golden Gophers robbed the Cyclones of a victory with a second-half rally and a late field goal to stave off Iowa State's upset bid by an 18-17 margin. A lot has changed in such a short time. Clifford Wilcox, Arturo Pacheco, and Tom Oldham are out the door for Iowa State, as is former Minnesota coach bingo415--replaced by lucas95. Now, Iowa State heads up to the Twin Cities for revenge, and they'll have to deal with a Minnesota squad that's been clicking so far this year. Combining a solid offense with a smothering defense, Minnesota blew out Miami (FL) 49-13 before smothering Maryland in a 20-9 victory. This matchup should be a defensive one. The Cyclone offense is still learning on the job: August Blank averages the fewest yards per pass attempt (5.79) in the Big XII, while Avery Jeffries averages the fewest per carry (3.94). That's not good news against a Minnesota front seven that can get pressure off the edges from the line alone while dropping its linebackers into shallow coverage, making it more difficult to rely on the run game or the short passing game. The Gophers are thinner in the secondary, where they've actually had to convert a free safety to cornerback and a linebacker to strong safety, but they still have Shane Brinkley on lockdown duty. Neither of their first opponents have been able to crack that code yet. Neither Miami nor Maryland managed a passing touchdown; all they got was 3 interceptions, including a pick-six by Giovanni Hilliard. Iowa State will need to avoid turnovers and figure out some way to move the ball down the field. Minnesota's offense isn't necessarily star-studded, but it's been effective. Quarterback Robbie Koehler's averaging more than 295 yards per game and has thrown 6 touchdown passes without an interception this season. Runningback Robbie Duffy can be hit-or-miss, but any defense has to account for him. Receiver Jamir Blackburn is the biggest name on the field, though he's trailed in receiving to true freshman tight end Salvatore Marlow both times out. David Tolliver ought to be able to match up well against Blackburn, and the rest of Iowa State's secondary's about as deep as the rest of Minnesota's receiving corps. The defensive front should be able to manage anything short or on the ground just like Minnesota's can. The Cyclone defense is its better half, and I think it ought to be able to hold its own against Minnesota's offense. But holding its own won't be enough, because I don't think Iowa State's offense has the firepower to overcome Minnesota's defense consistently enough. #16 Minnesota 24, Iowa State 13 #23 Kansas (1-1) vs. Notre Dame (1-1) (Soldier Field, Chicago, IL) Is Notre Dame back? And is Kansas still here? Those are the two most prominent questions that will be answered by this Shamrock Series game to conclude the home-away-neutral series between the Jayhawks and the Irish. Notre Dame is coming off of their biggest win in a while--perhaps their biggest win since the 2016 title game, in fact. Behind 160 rushing yards from Kalei Keil and an off day from Luke Trickett, Notre Dame shocked the world and stunned then-#2 USC in South Bend. This is their first game since then, and the way Kansas lost to Vanderbilt has to have them feeling nervous about this one. Vanderbilt was able to run the ball successfully against the Jayhawks and thrive on offense despite an off day from their quarterback--which is exactly Notre Dame's modus operandi. Owen Sorenson has been okay at best, starting the year 33-56 (58.9%) for 401 yards, 3 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions so far. Keil has been the biggest offensive threat, collecting 278 yards and a pair of scores on his 48 carries. Notre Dame's offensive line has been able to get him room to run, and fullback Jeremy Crawley can't be underestimated in that regard either. Kansas will need to find some way to get pressure in the backfield--or, at the very least, keep Keil and the scrambling Sorenson contained before they can do any damage. On offense, Kansas still hasn't quite hit their stride. Christian Graham's put up good numbers in most categories--68.4% passing, a 150.3 passer rating, 235 yards per game--but he's also thrown 3 interceptions against 4 touchdowns, and turnovers are a serious problem. Notre Dame has a tough secondary, and it's laden with experience between cornerback Antonio Early, safety-turned-cornerback Richard Madison, free safety Aidan Grey, and strong safety Jamir Foy. Nicholas Garland cracked that nut, but Trickett couldn't. A critical element will be Kansas's run game. Can Rod Fulton find room to work against Notre Dame's front seven? Neither Stanford nor USC ran the ball a ton against Notre Dame, whereas Fulton's carried the ball 20.5 times per game and averaged 94 yards on the ground. A successful Fulton will mean a successful Kansas offense; a bad game on the ground will put more pressure on the freshman Graham and leave the Jayhaw offense dysfunctional. I'm tentatively betting on Kansas chipping away at Notre Dame's defense and coming up with just enough to slow down Kalei Keil and the Notre Dame offense--but I'm also betting on a close game. #23 Kansas 26, Notre Dame 20 Oklahoma (0-2) at Texas Tech (2-0)* The final game of the daylight hours doubles as the first conference game of the season of the Big XII--and quite possibly the last stand for Oklahoma's young season. Oklahoma stands at 0-2 for the first time ever, having suffered losses to Auburn and Iowa, and their schedule doesn't get a whole lot kinder the rest of the way. They head down to Lubbock for the fourth time, and they're looking to come away with their fourth straight victory in the city. What makes this game feel within Oklahoma's grasp comes down to two words: Maurice White. As a freshman, White singlehandedly razed the Red Raider defense, putting up 238 yards and 4 touchdowns in Oklahoma's 49-7 win to reach 8-0. As a sophomore, White has become the most important player on the entire team thanks to the departure of Graham Burnett. He's been one of the two best runningbacks in the Big XII so far, rushing for 227 yards in 2 games on just over 5 yards per carry. Of course, the other of the two top runningbacks so far will be on the other sideline: true freshman Solomon McLaughlin is leading every rushing category across the board--56 carries, 285 yards, 5.08 yards per carry, and 5 touchdowns through 2 games. Texas Tech has committed to a run-first, run-second, pass-maybe offense, and Oklahoma may well be considering following suit. It's worked for the Red Raiders, as they can keep feeding McLaughlin, shorten the game, and limit what Chase Shapiro (27 pass attempts in 2 games) has to do. Oklahoma's tried to get true freshman quarterback Eric Pope involved in the offense, but there's been a lot of growing pains there as he's maintained a sub-110 passer rating. So this game is going to come down to who can run the ball more effectively, and who can stop the run more effectively. Texas Tech's been better at creating space with the offensive line. Texas Tech's been able to shut down the rushing attacks of North Carolina and Boise State. They haven't faced anyone of the caliber of Maurice White, though, wheras Oklahoma's had to face Sean Meade of Auburn. If they'd been able to limit Meade, that would be of more comfort for Sooner fans; instead, he and Marcus Black combined for 157 yards on 27 carries. I think Texas Tech's defensive numbers are due to regress somewhat, but Oklahoma's inexperienced and transfer-laden defensive front isn't in any kind of shape to stop McLaughlin or contain Shapiro. I think the Red Raiders are going to move to 3-0 with their first-ever win over Oklahoma. Texas Tech 30, Oklahoma 17 Saturday Evening Baylor (1-1) at California (2-0) The ninth and final game of this marathon slate is an important one for Baylor--but for everyone else, it's a matchup treat going both ways. After an overtime win over UCLA and a double-overtime loss to Arkansas, Baylor is looking to find its footing on defense--particularly against the pass. Steven Gore and Connor Dawson combined to throw for 748 yards and 9 touchdowns against the Bears, netting a 142.55 combined passer rating. That's less than ideal defense, and it's something that has to change before conference play starts. Their last opportunity to do so comes against Cal, a team that knows how to throw the ball but isn't quite as pass-happy as it used to be. With redshirt freshman Zachary McFadden now in the fold, the Golden Bears haven't been afraid to use him. He's rushed 47 times for 216 yards (a respectable 4.6 yards per carry) and 2 touchdowns. But the bread and butter of that offense is still the connection between junior quarterback Leonard Norris and senior receiver Hakeem Black. That hookup has been responsible for 196 yards and 2 scores on 11 connections, and Kristian Lipscomb has proved to be a valuable second target with 124 yards and 2 scores (both against UAB) of his own. That brings us to the first matchup dream: Hakeem Black against Kyle Cunningham. The junior corner out of Jefferson County in southeast Texas has been a phenom, and he's essentially been Baylor's only line of defense against these passing onslaughts. He kept Darius Waters in check, but #2 receivers have still feasted on the Baylor secondary. The once-unheralded Kristian Lipscomb is dangerous, so Baylor has to figure out how to neutralize him. On offense, though, Baylor hasn't hungered for points. Marcus Swartz has been wheeling and dealing. He's second in the Big XII with 599 yards, tied for second with 5 touchdown passes, first with 9.8 yards per attempt, and second again with a passer rating of 173.5. He's also added 101 yards and 3 scores on the ground on just 16 carries, and Nasir Burden's scored 4 touchdowns on the ground despite just 4.1 yards per carry. Swartz's favorite target has been Lamont Wilder, whose 225 yards receiving rank 2nd in the Big XII behind Jay Dunn's 235. Wilder's a great route-runner, and he'll need to pull out every trick he has up his sleeve to shake California star Blaine Lewis-Thompson. The true sophomore Lewis-Thompson has already made a name for himself, and he started off this season with a 2-pick game against Oregon State. With Zachary Waller, Ethan Mayes, and Patrick Causey as backup, Lewis-Thompson isn't on an island either. But Baylor's less likely to challenge Cal deep as they are to exploit the quick passing game and try to work the interior of the field. Cal's done well against the pass, but Oregon State's Lloyd Samuels provided proof-of-concept to the idea that Cal can be beaten on the ground. That's more likely to come in the form of Marcus Swartz using his legs than Nasir Burden tearing the defense apart, but I think that's just the edge Baylor needs in this one. I'm certainly worried about the California passing threat, but I think Baylor's offense can punch right back and take this win in Berkeley. Baylor 31, California 24 Byes: None
  36. 11 likes
    MIN-nesota-ERror-AL! Fax machine formatting error negates Vikings midseason re-signings, leaves Minnesota FO salty. Vikings executives after discovering the error.
  37. 11 likes
    Freddie Falcon demands more Guaranteed Money The cornerstone of the Falcons Spirit group is holding out for a better deal. "I have 3 little eyasses to feed. If acewulf wants to see my family fed, he better cough up some money!"
  38. 11 likes
    June 2nd, 2017 Associated Press Honolulu, Hawaii, U.S. Hawaii is proud to announce the hiring of @gigemags11 as the Head Football Coach after spending weeks in a national search for the brightest up-and-coming commodity in the CFBHC world. A relative unknown, gigemags11 was brought on as an analyst at Kansas State under tenured @HAFFnHAFF. At Kansas State gigemags11 spent countless hours analyzing film, game plans, and scouring for recruits to bring KSU back to glory. After just a couple weeks on the job, things got very interesting. Utah was extremely interested in pursuing gigemags11 as their Head Coach and went as far as offering the job to which gigemags11 accepted the job offer. Behind the scenes, Hawaii had also put their eye on the up-and-coming coach for some time but didn't realize he was in such demand. 30 minutes after accepting the job as Utah's HC gigemags11 announced he would be taking the HC job at Hawaii. When asked why gigemags11 responded, "Hawaii presented an offer that could not be refused". Some speculation has arisen that MWC commissioner @believer had an influence in the abrupt chance, but those will remain rumors for now. After a whirlwind of change, gigemags11 has found his home in the calm waters of Honolulu, Hawaii. gigemags11 is proud to bring a new brand of football and aggressive recruiting style to the Rainbow Warriors. He is welcomed with open arms as the previous tenures have been short-lived and tremulous. Stability and consistency are going to be key factors in improving the state of the program and bringing home the MWC trophy to the Rainbow Warriors. The current roster has some pieces to make a run, but here are some glaring needs that the new regime plan to fix, and quickly which should hopefully improve the program for the long-term. Even though gigemags11 starts behind the ball without the ability to star players to set needs for this recruiting cycle, he does not plan to use this as an excuse but rather motivation to bring in the best class possible. There ya have it, folks. Hawaii Rainbow Warriors have their man and the future is extremely bright on the beautiful island of Hawaii. gigemags11 will be around to answer any questions.
  39. 10 likes
    The early returns in this week of Big XII play came in strong, with five straight wins heading into early Saturday afternoon. The remainder of the slate wasn't so hot, with Iowa State, Kansas, and Baylor all dropping non-conference contests to leave the conference at 5-3 against the rest of the country this week. But in the meantime, Oklahoma and Texas Tech opened up conference play in the nation's most exciting conference with one of the best games of the season so far: a 33-30 double-overtime barn-burner in run-first heaven. Every team was in action this week, and every team's going to have some celebrating, some soul-searching--or both. The players who made that happen: Offensive Player of the Week: Maurice White, OKLA, 27 for 166 yards, 2 TD Defensive Player of the Week: Damani Jeffries, TEX, 2 INT, 3 Tackles Special Teams Player of the Week: Andrew Trimble, TCU, 44.6-yard punting average And now, let's talk about the games. Thursday Night Texas 37, Texas A&M 17 The good news: Almost everything for Texas. Kyler Tackett was sharp as a...no, I'm not gonna make that pun just yet. But the first-year starter finished over 70% for the third straight game, accounting for three touchdowns in the past. Steven Maloney made up for a lack of wide receiver production, soaking up half the team's receptions and receiving yards. Simeon Wells added 117 on the ground with a touchdown. On defense, Texas locked down the A&M offense, holding Nathan Singletary to 20-36 passing with two interceptions from Damani Jeffries. All told, they beat down rival Texas A&M for their first win in the series. The bad news: Not much to report. They didn't get a lot out of their actual wide receivers (Abdoul Causey, where art thou?), and they struggled on 3rd downs. But they more than made up for it in just about every other phase of the game, and an upset bid was never in the cards. The bottom line: Texas is looking better and better with each passing week, recording their first truly dominant win of the season. They showed a diverse offensive portfolio, and the duo of Kyler Tackett and Simeon Wells has been the best QB-RB tandem in the Big XII. At 3-0, they're already halfway to bowl eligibility and puts another bullet point on their résumé to make up for Oregon's slide. This is the kind of non-conference win that a team capable of winning the Big XII this year gets. TCU 30, Rice 27 The good news: TCU is on the board, breaking up a 3-game losing streak dating back to last season and earning their 4th win in the past 18 games. They kept Eric McLean reasonably in check--not shutting him down, but preventing him from putting together a truly explosive effort. They brought him down 3 times, pressured him into an interception to Matthew Dyson, and swarmed Nate Wooten the few times he carried the ball. They didn't let Rice extend drives on 3rd downs, and they took advantage of more than 100 yards' worth of Owl penalties. The bad news: Sam Milner continued his up-and-down start with another up-and-down game. On the bright side, he was in the plus column when it came to TD/INT ratio. On the other side, he finished 15-28 (53.6%) and managed just 144 yards through the air, posting a third straight passer rating in the 110-120 range (conference average is 142.1). He hasn't been helped by a lack of a clear go-to target. Every Big XII team but Texas Tech and TCU has a player with at least 200 receiving yards so far. Even Texas Tech has a 150-yard receiver. TCU's leading receiver, tight end Kana Tagata, ranks 20th in the Big XII with 121 receiving yards. This is a lineup that will have years to coalesce, but that youth is costing TCU right now. The bottom line: A win is a win, of course, but this is a big one for TCU. A loss would have made bowl eligibility a serious uphill battle from 0-3, and Rice is not a cupcake--especially not on the road. I'm being hard on Sam Milner in this article, but it's notable that TCU's still scored 30 points each of their last two times out despite Milner's struggles. The most encouraging sign for TCU is their defensive performance: three sacks and an interception. The big-play element has been missing for the Frogs as of late, and if they can restore that part of their defensive identity then they're going to be dangerous again this year. Friday Night West Virginia 27, Arkansas 16 The good news: West Virginia had a serious challenge going up against Arkansas, and they passed it with flying colors. Mohammed Foster was locked-in from the get-go and turned in a stellar performance (20-25 passing, 337 total yards, 3 total touchdown), Jason Dupree and J.C. Weldon were unanswerable, and the defense came out ready to barbecue the Flying Pig offense. They held Connor Dawson to 27-50 passing, picking him off twice and sacking him four times (including two takedowns by Hudson Adam), and seized control with a 13-3 first quarter that the Razorbacks never recovered from. If you had to draw up a perfect game for West Virginia, this was close to it. The bad news: And the only reasons it wasn't absolutely perfect were Mohammed Foster's one interception, a 3-10 effort on third down, and an inability to change field position with a 37.9 punting average. All of which come off as relatively minor concerns. The bottom line: This was a much-needed win for the Mountaineers after a rough opening slate, and a big feather in the cap for a West Virginia defense that hadn't held anybody to 16 points or fewer since quarterback-challenged Oklahoma State in 2018. Like TCU's win, this was also important for their bowl hopes and important because it demonstrated a new edge to the defense that hadn't really been evident until this weekend. Time to buy West Virginia stock? Kansas State 31, Wyoming 10 The good news: The Wildcat defense continued to eat opposing passers alive, making Jasiah Howard's day a waking nightmare. They held him to 138 yards on 15-27 (55.6%) passing, intercepting him twice. Redshirt freshman outside linebacker Shawn Reyes continued his red-hot start to the season, intercepting a pass for the second straight game and running his tackle total to 15 in three games. Defensive end Javier Tovar even managed a pick, causing the K-State sideline to erupt. The offensive balanced remained a strength, with two touchdowns apiece coming from Rahim Murrell and Elijah Humphrey. And Kansas State keeps rolling on. The bad news: After his scintillating debut, Rahim Murrell hasn't been able to follow up his performance. He finished the day with just 180 yards on 17-30 (56.7%) passing, matching his two touchdowns with two interceptions the other way--and it really isn't a good sign to struggle against Wyoming. This was a 3-3 game at halftime, and Murrell's struggles had Kansas State looking all sorts of out of sorts. Fortunately for Murrell and the Wildcats, he was able to get it together in the second half and put the ballgame well away. The bottom line: Parents, it's time to talk to your kids about an undefeated Kansas State. The Wildcats are now 3-0, have swept their non-conference schedule, and are halfway to bowl eligibility. This was easily the most convincing of their three wins so far, and the 28-7 second half was their best half of football so far this season. They've now climbed to 6th in the Big XII power rankings and earned a vote in the Coaches' Poll. This was the easy part, but it's important to note that Kansas State hasn't always taken care of the easy part before (see: Louisiana Tech 2018). This next game against TCU may well be the program's most important game since the Sunflower Showdown in 2016. Saturday Afternoon Oklahoma State 30, Virginia Tech 27 The good news: In their first game against Power 5 competition, Oklahoma State got the dubya and became the third Big XII team to hit 3-0 in a topsy-turvy game. It's hard to point to one thing Oklahoma State did as the primary cause of victory, but they did most things well enough to get the win. Jay Dunn stayed atop the Big XII receiving leaderboard with 81 yards and a score. Ralph Hinson's three field goals were a difference-maker--particularly since Virginia Tech's Declan Havens missed one. They intercepted Ralph Westfall once and sacked him twice. Perhaps most important was the fact that they stayed on the field, converting 6 of 13 third down opportunities and wearing down the Hokie defense all the way to the end. The bad news: Chester Brenner finally looked mortal. After throwing for 5 touchdowns in back-to-back games to open the season, Brenner was limited to 62.2% passing and threw a pair of interceptions to counteract his two touchdowns. Oklahoma State had appeared to seize control of this one with a 27-17 lead after three quarters, only to let Virginia Tech right back into it in the fourth. Running the ball wasn't very effective, with Khalil Bell averaging just over 3.6 yards per carry. They gave the Hokies opportunities; Virginia Tech didn't take advantage of them. The bottom line: Three games, three wins, three offensive efforts of 30 points or more. Oklahoma State's offense may have looked imperfect for the first time this week, but it's still dropping points with all deliberate haste. The defense is looking like it's mostly recovered from the Western Kentucky near-disaster, keeping a capable Virginia Tech offense from replicating the 45-point Hilltopper outburst. A 3-0 start in non-conference play puts them in commanding position for a bowl bid, and they'll get a huge test their next time out with currently undefeated Texas Tech in week 6. #16 Minnesota 14, Iowa State 7 The good news: This was a stellar defensive effort by the Cyclones, making Minnesota fight for every yard and every point. Robbie Duffy was a non-factor in the run game, netting just 55 yards on 16 carries. Robbie Koehler made up the difference, but even his day was marred by interceptions to cornerbacks David Tolliver and Israel McKenzie. Redshirt freshman Paul Bryant mauled the Minnesota offense like a bear, racking up a team-high 8 tackles. Kai Voss also recorded a sack, which by now is par for the course for him. They held a potent Minnesota offense to just 14 points, and because of that they had a real shot to take this one. The bad news: When an offensive effort gets the starting quarterback, starting runningback, and starting kicker benched, it was a particularly bad offensive effort. August Blank averaged 4.7 yards per attempt, completing 20-36 passes for 170 yards for the Cyclones' only touchdown and a pair of interceptions. Sincere Spikes and Elliott Efi both had solid games, but nobody else had more than 20 yards receiving. The ground game managed to be even worse, with Avery Jeffries managing just 38 yards on 14 carries, keeping Iowa State in 2nd-and-long and 3rd-and-long situations all day. Special teams let Iowa State down as much as anything. They couldn't affect field position in the punting game, and Daniel Craft missed both of his field goal attempts--which would have given Iowa State a chance to win with a field goal if Craft had converted. The bottom line: This was Iowa State's lowest offensive output since scoring 6 points in week 6 of the 2017 season against Miami, and it was bad enough that coach Minnowsotan felt the need to make major changes. Peter Edge takes over for quarterback August Blank, Josiah Edmonds takes over for runningback Avery Jeffries, and Mendy D'Angelo takes over for kicker Daniel Craft (who is 5-8 for the year and 2-5 from 40+ yards). From an expectations standpoint, it's not a bad loss for the Cyclones. Minnesota is legit, and keeping it close against them is a good sign overall. But at this point, it's clear that the offense isn't working right. It's a risk to make such major changes heading into conference play, but sometimes a risk needs to be taken. Notre Dame 40, #23 Kansas 21 The good news: Very little. Rod Fulton averaged more than 5 yards per carry (but on only 16 carries), Christian Graham threw 2 touchdown passes (but had a bad game otherwise), and Aden Evans averaged more than 43 yards per punt (but Hunter Smallwood averaged even more). This just plain wasn't a good game for Kansas. The bad news: Notre Dame bet that they could disrupt Christian Graham. Kansas bet that they could disrupt the Notre Dame run game. Only one bet was cashed in. Notre Dame ran for 207 yards on the Jayhawk defense, intercepted Christian Graham three times, sacked him three times, and became the fourth team to hang a 40-spot on Kansas in regulation. Kalei Keil nabbed 133 yards and a score on 26 carries, but quarterback Owen Sorensen added 74 and a score of his own on 8 rushes. But in addition, he had an efficient day through the air, completing 15-19 passes for 231 yards and two touchdowns through the air. When Notre Dame wasn't in the endzone, they were kicking four field goals. Kansas wasn't--Joel Hawley missed his only field goal attempt of the day. The Jayhawk line looked uncharacteristically bad, with right end Eric Samuels (1.5 sacks) working over left tackle Ben Goode. None of this is something that Kansas can afford to have repeat in conference play. The bottom line: This is an expectation-changing loss for Kansas, no two ways about it. It's not just that they fall to 1-2; it's more the way that the Jayhawks lost this one. They can't afford to have all their question marks--Christian Graham's youth, the defense's ability to defend things--come back with bad answers. But alarmingly, even things that were in their strengths column--namely, the offensive line--have slid into question mark territory. It's a serious wake-up call before conference play, and it turns the Iowa State matchup into a must-win game. If Kansas doesn't beat a vulnerable Iowa State, they will be staying home this winter. Texas Tech 33, Oklahoma 30 (2OT) The good news/ The bad news: This game took a lot of guts from Texas Tech, and they were able to dig deep and win this one in double overtime. Solomon McLaughlin continued his sensational start, posting another 133 yards (which is actually a season low!) and 2 touchdowns on 26 carries. Chase Shapiro had one of his better efforts of his career, going a season-best 11-16 for 109 yards and a touchdown while maintaining his interception-free streak this season. Oklahoma's thin front seven really didn't have an answer for Texas Tech's ability to get chunks of yardage on the ground. The bad news/ The good news: Maurice White is now officially the most feared man in Lubbock, as the sophomore tailback ripped through the Red Raider defense to the tune of 166 yards and 2 touchdowns on 27 carries--the most yardage any Big XII player has earned on the ground since White hit up Texas Tech for 238 last season. The most encouraging sign for Oklahoma, though, was the play of Eric Pope. He didn't have a good debut, and his second game wasn't much better. But Oklahoma made some adjustments, followed Texas Tech's lead in the rushing revolution, and Pope put up a solid statline: 9-12 for 104 yards, 1 touchdown, and 59 rushing yards on 10 carries. If they can get that out of Pope going forward, Oklahoma's got a chance to turn things around. The bottom line: The first conference game of the season was exactly as much fun as expected. Two high-caliber rushing attacks did exactly what they do best, trading punch for punch until the Red Raiders were finally able to get one stop that Oklahoma couldn't match in the second overtime period. Both teams should probably feel good about the result to a degree. Oklahoma doesn't really revel in moral victories (especially since the loss drops them to 0-3 for the first time ever), but they found an offensive formula that worked and can build on that going forward as they face a must-win against Pittsburgh. Texas Tech, meanwhile, gets up to 3-0. This is their third 3-0 start in school history, and the previous two ended with the Red Raiders in the top 8. They'll enjoy a 1-0 foothold in conference play and look to wrap up non-conference play with a road date at Washington. Saturday Evening California 23, Baylor 21 The good news: Baylor had some fine individual performances, starting with Marcus Swartz. The senior quarterback was the offense, throwing for two touchdowns and rushing for another to account for all of Baylor's scoring. Hastin Rider and Lamont Wilder were reliable targets, though there wasn't any third player who stepped up. On defense, Julian Neville had a DPOTW-worthy game--if Damani Jeffries didn't beat him out for it. Neville picked off Leonard Norris, added a sack, and had 5 tackles as well. Darius Wilkes added the Bears' other sack, and Ned Denny was all over the place with 8 tackles. Most importantly, they were able to stop their pass defense's bleeding. After allowing 374 yards per game through the air for the first two weeks, they kept California to a more reasonable 235. The bad news: But at the same time, Leonard Norris still completed 75% of his passes, got his 235 yards on just 24 attempts, and threw a pair of scores in the second quarter that provided the backbone for Cal's offensive efforts. The defense was good enough to give Baylor a chance, but special teams ended up making the difference in this one. Jesse Cantrell missed his only field goal attempt from the game. Sam Walsh hit from 51, 43, and what would effectively be the decisive field goal from 48 yards in the fourth quarter. The bottom line: Baylor's now played three close games, and for the second straight time they've come out on the wrong end of it--which means that they're now 1-2 after a slate in which they were probably the favorite all three times out. It's a heartbreaker to lose this one, and it brings a lot of questions to the forefront for the Bear defense. This game was a test because Baylor won't face in conference play the pass-heavy attacks that UCLA and Arkansas brought to the table, and giving up 75% passing and nearly 10 yards per attempt isn't an encouraging sign at all. Their next three weeks are a bye, a trip to Iowa State, and a home date with Texas Tech, so they at the very least will not be tested against the pass for a while yet. Byes: None
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    Welcome back! We'll be looking at 6 new battles this week. Same format as last week. Then we'll look at last week's battles and what has/hasn't changed. First, the battles with out of conference schools. 1.) WR Sawyer Vogel Target 1.5/4.5 Teams in Play: *Both teams have a Red Box Why it's important: Everyone needs Wide Receivers. Georgia is going hard for Zeke Burkett and will need a target for him to throw to. Clemson has created a scheme/system that relies on the passing game. So, getting good wide outs is very important for them. Sawyer has crazy potential and could maybe step up as a freshman in certain situations. Who Will Win: Toss Up. I don't like doing that, but both teams are in plenty of battles. Georgia has the pipeline in state bonus, but Clemson has a larger weekly allotment of points. This battle may not be decided until the end. 2.) OT Spencer Gage Run Blocking 1.5/4 Teams in Play: *All three teams have a Red Box Why it's important: Offensive Line is somehow underrated on a Football Simulation Website. A good OL can mask so many offensive woes, especially at the college level. Any of these teams would benefit from bringing in a NFLHC talent on the outside. Protecting the Quarterback, and opening holes in the running game. Who Will Win: NCSU and Charlotte are in so many battles right now, that Vandy will come away victorious since they will be able to spend more points without sacrificing other positions/players. 3. C Leonard Lincoln Run Blocking 1/4 Teams in Play: *Virginia has a Red Box. Ohio does not Why it's Important: See: Spencer Gage Who Will Win: They have the camp bonus and currently have the lead. I think they'll hold on until the end on Lincoln. Now, we'll look at battles between ACC Schools. 1. C Dwayne Horton Run Blocking 1/4.5 Teams in Play: *Both teams have the Red Box. Why it's Important: We're tripling up on the Offensive Line this week. It's such an important area of the game that doesn't get the respect it deserves. Both teams are building and will need players on the line to cover up mistakes in the backfield. Who Will Win: They have more points, and eventually Duke will use their points elswhere. 2. OLB Robert Royal Blitz 1/4.5 Teams in Play: *Virginia Tech has the Red Box, Virginia does not. Why it's Important: Virginia doesn't have the richest history of linebacker play, and need a player like Royal to build up a tradition. Virginia Tech needs help on defense ASAP. Aside from the on field issues, pure hatred and pride. These teams hate each other, especially after the Soldier Brooks sweepstakes which Virginia won last year. VT will look to take Royal this year for their own pride. Who Will Win: They seem to have a connection with Royal. Even though UVA gets more points a week, I think Royal ends up in Blacksburg next season. 3. SS Victor Overturn Zone Coverage 1/4 Teams in Play: *Both teams have the Red Box Why it's Important: UNC is trying to rebuild it's program and players like Overturn will go a long way to doing that. Duke is trying to build upon it's recent recruiting success. Also, like VT-UVA, these teams plain hate each other and want to see the other fail. Who Will Win: UNC is very invested in Kyler Wilson, and that battle will take more out of UNC than they can really take. And players like Overturn will fall off of their radar. Finally, we'll look at least week's battles and what has changed. Teams with the * after them have a Red Box. 1. QB Kyler Wilson Last Week: *, * Prediction: This Week: *, * 2. DE Ibrahim Rowe Last Week: *, , Prediction: This Week: *, , 3. OLB Rory Foote Last Week: *, *, Prediction: This Week: *, , 4. RB Brayden Pepper Last Week: *, * Prediction: This Week: *, 5. OLB Mike Owens Last Week: *, Prediction: This Week: *, 30+ behind 6.CB Dion Sutton Last Week: *, * Prediction: This Week: *, * Thanks again for reading! If you have a battle you want me to cover next week, just PM me.
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    Miami OH now has the right to no state reference, therefore Miami beat Miami FL
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    Credit to @HAFFnHAFFfor creating the magazine cover. Rahim requested to be on the cover this week stating to the network "I'm the greatest, why shouldn't I be on the cover every week?" Hard to argue with that logic Rahim.. From all of us here at the Big XII Network we leave you with this.. Who have you told you're the greatest to today?
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    Guess which team recently temporarily lost their coach
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    With a new season comes a new overhaul of the Big XII Network's coverage. For years, our postgame coverage has been based on following the game's sequence of events while tying it into an overarching game story. Now, we're making the story of the game itself more of the focus. We want to highlight what went well, what went poorly, and what it all means--and as always, we will continue to provide the highest quality of coverage in the country for the nation's most exciting conference. Week 1 was a mixed back for the Big XII. The conference went 4-2 against a variety of opponents. Not every team that won came away feeling elated, and not every team that lost came away feeling deflated. On the extremes, Texas Tech had a truly dominant win over North Carolina and Oklahoma took a beating at the hands of Auburn. In the middle, though, TCU put up a good fight against Clemson while Texas survived Boise State, Baylor survived UCLA in overtime, and Oklahoma State survived Western Kentucky. Yes, that Western Kentucky. If the Big XII were always predictable, after all, how would we be the nation's most exciting conference? Before we get started, let's take a moment to recognize the players that made this thrilling week possible. Offensive Player of the Week: Marcus Swartz, BAY, 20 of 29 for 310 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT; 6 carries for 38 yards, 2 TD Defensive Player of the Week: Jabari Fletcher, TEX, 1 INT, 1 Sack, 5 Tackles Special Teams Player of the Week: Jesse Cantrell, BAY, 2-2 FG (19, 41), 6-6 XP And now, let's talk about the games. Thursday Night Texas Tech 52, North Carolina 3 The good news: Pretty much everything went right for Texas Tech down in New Orleans. Solomon McLaughlin was nothing short of electric in his debut, cruising to 150 yards and 3 touchdowns--the first Texas Tech runningback to hit those two marks together since Shaun Evans. Just as importantly, Chase Shapiro was effective on limited passing duty (7-12 for 109 yards and 1 TD) and very effective on the ground (2 touchdowns on 8 carries). Not to be left out, the defense shut down North Carolina. The defense kept the ball well away from the endzone, sacked Max Laws six times, and--thanks to a fumble recovery for a score by Xavier Bynum--actually managed to outscore the Carolina offense for the game. The bad news: They did technically give up 280 yards passing to Max Laws. But with two forced turnovers, six sacks, and complete control of the field position battle, those yards were no danger to turn into points. There really isn't anything else to complain about here. Bottom line: Texas Tech's offense came into the season with a lot of question marks, and came out of week 1 with a few exclamation marks. Their 52 points is a school record, which is as good of an impression as can be made in the first year of a new offensive system with a new feature back. With a defense that's just as fast, aggressive, and opportunistic as ever, it's hard to imagine a better debut for Texas Tech. And as the only Big XII program to actually make a statement win in week 1, the Red Raiders should be grinning ear to ear right about now. Saturday Afternoon Oklahoma State 49, Western Kentucky 45 The good news: Two games, two new Big XII school records for points. Oklahoma State's offense did not miss a beat in game 1 post-Raheem, with Chester Brenner directing traffic and carving up the Hilltopper defense to the tune of 370 yards and 5 touchdowns. Jay Dunn and Xavier Gant each traversed the 100-yard mark, all while joining Jeremy Bridges and Christopher Vinson in catching touchdown passes. Newly minted starting runningback Khalil Bell showed off his goal-line chops with a pair of scores. And the defense, for all its flaws, did win the turnover battle with a pair of interceptions that set the Cowboys up to light up the scoreboard even more. The bad news: Giving up 45 points to Western Kentucky is not a good sign. Freshman Riley West slung it for 290 yards and 3 scores, Gary Foley rushed for 99 yards and scored twice on the ground, and Oklahoma State's sole giveaway came in the form of a pick-six to linebacker Mark Jackson. They committed 9 penalties for 87 yards to Western Kentucky's 3 for 15 yards, and they allowed the Hilltoppers to convert on 5 of 10 third downs. Other than the turnovers, it's hard to point to much that went well on the defensive end. Bottom line: A win is a win. (There will be a lot of that sentiment going around this week.) But this was a game where Oklahoma State's secondary was supposed to be relatively untested, and that ended up not being the case. It may turn out to be a fluke, and Oklahoma State will have week 2 off to work out the kinks before they face off against Marshall. Meanwhile, the offense picked up right where it left off. Western Kentucky's defense is (on paper) better than it was last year, and Oklahoma State outscored last year's 41-point effort against the Hilltoppers. That hopefully counts for something. Texas 17, Boise State 14 The good news: Texas's defense kept Boise State in check for most of the game, shutting down new helmsman Roman Green. The pass rush and the secondary did their jobs to perfection, hounding the junior college transfer into 10-of-20 passing for 140 yards, sacking him four times, and picking him off twice. Outside linebacker Jabari Fletcher was the star of the show, intercepting and sacking Green while racking up 5 total tackles to earn Big XII Defensive Player of the Week honors. The Longhorns also got strong debuts from freshman linebacker Thomas Eason (1 INT) and freshman defensive tackle Jamal Robinson (1.5 sacks). Even with the offense not clicking on all cylinders, the defense gave Texas a chance in this one. The bad news: The offense wasn't bad, per se. They only turned it over once. Kyler Tackett only took one sack and completed more than 70% of his passes. Simeon Wells averaged a not-bad 4.2 yards per carry. But the end result wasn't much to write home about. The Longhorns managed just 17 points and needed a fourth-quarter touchdown to get home with a win over Boise. They had miscues: 10 penalties that cost them 89 yards, a missed 26-yard field goal by Will Ladd, 105 yards and 2 touchdowns surrendered to Marquise Allen. The difference in this game ultimately ended up being a missed 48-yard field goal from Boise State. This game had a very similar feel to last year's 19-10 win in Boise that was part of a 7-6 campaign--the difference is that this one was narrower. Bottom line: Again, a win is a win. Texas found a way to get the job done while still trying to figure out how their new offense is going to run. Kyler Tackett showed promise, making the safer throws with precision and efficiency in completing 17 of his 24 attempts. They didn't go for much more than 10 yards a completion, but that's something to work on heading into their first bye week and their subsequent matchup with Oregon. Their defense performed admirably in this one; it'll be seriously tested against Trevon Yeldon and company. Saturday Evening #4 Clemson 33, TCU 20 The good news: TCU hung with last year's national runners-up, even leading them 14-13 at the half in Death Valley before Clemson was able to pull away with a strong second half. The defense couldn't always stop Clemson in their tracks, but they did force them to take field goals over touchdowns four times--which is certainly an improvement over the zero field goals forced from last year's meeting. TCU was able to score through the air and on the ground, and the Sam Milner-Kana Tagata connection was working well. They also prevented Jamel Armstrong from exploding on them, holding him under 6.9 yards per attempt picking him off once. The bad news: Honestly, not a lot of problems that were unexpected came up for TCU. Their freshmen looked like freshmen--Finn Nielsen and Griffin McHanna in particular didn't do very much. Sam Milner averaged 6.4 yards per attempt on 60% passing and Shamar Burroughs was held under 3.9 yards per carry. They still managed 20 points out of that, though. Perhaps the most important bit of bad news is the lack of quarterback pressure: Jamel Armstrong only went down once all game, and that's a bad indicator given TCU's pressure problems last year. Bottom line: This doesn't really change expectations about TCU one way or the other. This is their toughest game of the season on paper, and they lost by two scores. A loss similar to last year's would have been reason to press the panic button; a closer loss (or even a win) would've been cause for optimism. Instead, what we saw is that TCU is as young as we thought they were, and they've got some room to grow. Whether or not we'll see them grow in the next week is the question upon which the fate of the Iron Skillet depends as TCU heads to Dallas to take on SMU. #8 Auburn 49, #23 Oklahoma 17 The good news: Maurice White rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown, Ty Royal caught 8 passes for 101 yards and a touchdown, Eric Pope averaged 7.5 yards per carry (albeit on four carries), Theo Ricci totaled 8 tackles, and Louis Dwyer made his only field goal attempt. So...a few things to build on, at least? The bad news: Just about everything else. Oklahoma suffered its largest margin of defeat in school history as Auburn took control in all three phases of the game. The Tigers were up 21-0 after the first quarter and 35-3 at halftime--the most Oklahoma has ever yielded in a half. Marcus Black was unstoppable, accounting for 250 all-purpose yards and 4 total touchdowns on the day. Auburn's newest plug-and-play runningback star, Sean Meade, cruised to 137 yards and 2 scores on 23 carries. Oklahoma's offense couldn't establish a foothold in the passing game, with Eric Pope finishing 16-32 with a touchdown, two interceptions, and a fumble on a Taua Maui'a strip-sack that Maui'a took back for a score. Bottom line: It's normally a good principle to avoid panicking after one game of the season, particularly when that game comes against a top-ten team that has a real shot at the national title. Like TCU, Oklahoma can probably expect not to play an opponent of Auburn's caliber for the rest of the season. But the scale of this loss is not really one that has a lot of precedent for Sooner football. Their next-worst loss was by 21 in the opener against ECU in 2018--and that presaged a 4-8 season. Oklahoma has a bye week to get their bearings before they hit the road to play Iowa--and with Texas Tech, Pittsburgh, and the remainder of conference play coming up after that, they don't have a lot of time to get back on track. #15 Baylor 54, UCLA 51 (OT) The good news: My editors tell me I can't copy and paste from Oklahoma State's section, but the good news is similar for both schools: like Oklahoma State, Baylor's offense didn't lose a beat after losing their superstar. Nasir Burden's 94 yards and 2 touchdowns on 22 carries filled in solidly for Bell's role, but Marcus Swartz was the star of the show. With 348 all-purpose yards and 5 total touchdowns--including the game-winner in overtime--Swartz was unstoppable. Baylor did a lot of the little things right: they made their blocking assignments, converted 40% of their third downs, and didn't let penalties bog them down. Their defense did just enough despite the gaudy point total, picking off two passes and forcing UCLA to kick a field goal in overtime to set up the game-winning score. Lastly, Kyle Cunningham was phenomenal, being one of the team's two interceptors while also shutting down Darius Waters entirely. The bad news: The combination of Steven Gore to Jay Arreola needed to be nipped in the bud, but Baylor's secondary simply couldn't stay abreast of the UCLA flanker. Arreola caught 10 passes for 150 yards and 2 scores, and Gore totaled over 400 yards with 5 touchdown passes on the evening. As a result, Baylor could never pull away no matter how many points they put on the board. They couldn't get nearly enough pressure on Gore, sacking him twice on 62 dropbacks. They benefited from kicker Derek Hendrix's lack of range: the sophomore's two missed attempts from 41 and 48 yards could have swung this game the other way. All in all, they gave up the second-most points in a game in Baylor history. Bottom line: Say it with me: A win is a win. Baylor has more reason to say that than Oklahoma State or Texas, though, as UCLA absolutely had the talent to make this one competitive. Steven Gore looked like his freshman self, the DirecTV to his sophomore self's cable. Arreola against William Travis is a mismatch, and UCLA exploited it to no end. But in the end, the Bears came away with the win. This game ought to draw comparisons to Baylor's 45-38 shootout win over Oklahoma State last year--it was the first time anybody had really done damage to the Baylor defense all year, but it ultimately didn't change the Bears' outlook for the year. That game put them at 1-0 in conference play, and they'd go on to win the division. Unless Baylor puts up a similar defensive effort next week against Arkansas, there's nothing to panic about.
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    Aaron Shea has plenty of reasons to celebrate after their 6th straight victory Welcome to the latest edition of the @bingo415 NFLHC Power Rankings! Don't worry folks bingo still ranked the teams, however; he asked me to provide the commentary for each team. This week you get a nice combination of where bingo thinks everyone belongs and what I think about it. Could you really ask for anything better than that? Remember, if you don't like where you are in the rankings...play better! 1. Los Angeles Rams - The Rams hold the league’s highest winning streak at 8 games. Even better they are a perfect 7-0 since superstar Darrell Murphy’s return to the starting lineup. We could talk about their insane balance catching the ball, but did you know they also sport the league’s stingiest defense? The Rams lead the league in Fumbles recovered, are near the top in sacks and interceptions, and are the least penalized team in the league. All of this is a recipe for being at the top of the rankings. 2. Carolina Panthers - Carolina followed up their shootout loss to Green Bay a few weeks ago with a 2 game winning streak. This week the Panthers were able to feast on the weak secondary of the Minnesota Vikings. Skaggs and Latta both had efficient games and the defense held a somewhat potent Vikings offense to under 10 points. Curtis Henry continues to grow and the Panthers continue to be a force. 3. Green Bay Packers - At this point in the season inspiral should be on everyone’s short list for Coach of the Year, GM of the Year, and Owner of the Year. Green Bay was set to be much improved this year, but I don’t think anyone had them pegged at 9-1 after 10 games. This week the defense was able to frustrate Christian Barkley into multiple turnovers and Justin McCain had another solid game to continue his sensational rookie campaign. It’s easy to say that the Pack had high draft picks so they of course should draft well. However, McCain was the 10th WR taken in the draft and is arguably having the biggest impact of any wide-out taken. 4. Indianapolis Colts - The Colts hold the AFC’s best winning streak at 6 games. Aaron Shea is having an MVP worthy season with a staggering 122.49 QB rating through 9 games. Indy went toe-to-toe with one of the NFC’s best teams in Detriot and came out on top. They are getting a little more from their running game this year and should be one of the AFC favorites as the playoffs approach. 5. Seattle Seahawks - The Seahawks are another team on a massive roll after a Monday Night slug-fest against the Dallas Cowboys. The Seattle defense held the vaunted Cowboy rushing attack to right at 4 YPC and made life difficult for QB Taylor Rodriguez. Booker-T is starting to come alive and Jarius Jones finding rhythm with the rest of the offense. The race for the NFC West is going to be stellar! 6. Detroit Lions - Detroit went to Indy and fought hard against one of the league’s hottest teams on the road. The Lions are smooth, effective, and balanced and it’s hard to fault them for losing on the road to one of the league’s best quarterbacks. They sport one of the league’s best defenses and their offense typically doesn’t make a ton of mistakes. The NFC playoff race is crowded, but look for Detroit to emerge as one of the favorites. 7. New York Jets - The Jets had enjoyed a nice winning streak until the ran into Eagles. The Jets were surprisingly unable to get a lot of pressure on Allan Taylor as he was able to get big play after big play. The Jets were able to keep Taylor inefficient so that’s a plus. Wegert had one of his worst outings of the year with 2 interceptions to the Philly line-backing core. One positive for the Jets is that they finally seem to have found that missing running game. With a strong grip on the AFC East look for the Jets to bounce back from this loss. 8. San Francisco 49ers - The defending champs used a big game from backup RB Greg Hadnot to efficiently take down the slumping Redskins. The defense delivered in a big way getting the shutout of the Skins. Rookie Michael McBride is starting to make an impact on the line and they are still the defending champs so look for them to keep rolling. 9. Dallas Cowboys - The Cowboys dropped a tough road contest to the surging Seattle Seahawks. The Cowboy defense showed up to play holding the ‘hawks to 16 points, but were unable to consistently move the chains on offense. The Cowboys should find relief that they’ve been able to run all-over everyone up to this point. Look for the ‘boys to rebound with heavy doses of Abraham and Robinson. 10. Jacksonville Jaguars - Raise your hand if you predicted that Jacksonville would be leading the AFC after 9 games? The Jaguars rarely turn the ball over and sport one of the league’s best running backs. Combine that with great coaching and a creative offense and you have a recipe for a team that’s exceeding everyone’s expectations. The Jags only had 3 total turnovers going into the Green Bay game which was second only to Indy. 11. Atlanta Falcons - The Falcons enjoyed a highly efficient game from QB A.J. Jefferson in their victory over the Steelers. Atlanta leads the league in forced fumbles and are close to the tops in forced turnovers and sacks. The defense and rushing attack are consistently there, they need Jefferson to continue to have games like this. The NFC wild card race is tight so regardless of Atlanta’s improvement over the last year they need to continue to play better to get in. 12. Philadelphia Eagles - Philly got a huge road victory over the AFC leading Jets. Their offensive line was able to keep Allan Taylor upright and it gave him time to find his wide-outs for big plays. The line-backing group came up huge with 2 picks of Wegert which helped to seal the deal. The Eagles are currently on the outside looking in for a NFC Wildcard spot, and will have to use this game as a springboard if they want to make a run at getting in. 13. Denver Broncos - As sad as it is did anyone get better news this weekend than the Denver Broncos? Personally - I don’t like to see anyone injured, but with Nick Hall going down for an unknown amount of time, Denver takes the driver’s seat in the AFC West. J.B. Blacknail is getting better every game which only stands to help young QB Todd Jennings. 14. Oakland Raiders - The Raiders got the victory but continue to be devastated by injuries this year. Losing one of the league’s best quarterbacks for a potentially significant amount of time isn’t going to make life easy for any coach. Combine that with the other injuries that Oakland has dealt with and you have a team looking for ways to rebound. Alien is one of the best coaches in the league so if anyone can weather this storm it’s him. 15. Cleveland Browns - Cleveland used a solid all-around game to beat the Texans in overtime. The AFC North has been pretty hard to predict at this point, but Cleveland seems to be the most consistent of the bunch. Shout-out to former Aggie Jason McClairen for his big game against the Texans. 16. Cincinnati Bengals - The Bengals have all the pieces around QB Joel King to be successful. They were able to do just enough in the “wet-field” game to take down the visiting Dolphins. King had his most efficient game of the season, but with the field conditions it’s hard to tell how that affected the defenses of both teams. Adrian Jankowski has morphed into one of the best wideouts in the league and could be on pace to take that title soon. 17. Kansas City Chiefs - The Chiefs are on a roll winning 4 games in a row after their latest victory over Buffalo. There was a lot of change that went on in Kansas City over the offseason so it’s plausible that they are now getting everything worked out. Terrence Rodgers is having a nice rookie campaign averaging 4.57 YPC. With the bad news in Oakland the Chiefs are another team looking to step in and take the AFC West crown. They did beat the Broncos earlier this season 18. Miami Dolphins - It’s no secret that Miami has one of the worst set of wide-outs in the league. Combine that with an injury to Marcus Barry and that’s a recipe for losses. Washington is up next - so we’ll see how the Dolphins respond. 19. Houston Texans - Houston lost an OT game in Cleveland this weekend. The good news is that Pacheco had a nice rebound after his disaster against Minnesota. The bad news is they still let Alex Leshoure get hit way too often and opposing tight ends continue to gash them. Houston gives up the 4th most sacks in the league which isn’t how you want to treat your developing quarterback. History shows that young quarterbacks who get hit frequently have less than stellar careers. 20. New England Patriots - The Brad Davis era begins with a victory over the New York Giants! Brad was able to lean on Elvis Williams and a opportunistic defense to pull out the victory. It appears that New England is going to use the remainder of the season to evaluate Brad Davis’s role in their future. 21. Baltimore Ravens - Baltimore fits in the AFC North cluster that’s hard to predict. They had the week off to savor their 4th quarter comeback over Tennessee. They still have Tyrone Jones who is one of the best in the game. It’s clear that Baltimore needs some help on offense, but they still have a realistic shot of making the playoffs.. 22. Tennessee Titans - Tennessee lead the Ravens by 11 with 4 minutes to go, but couldn’t hold on in the end. The team has made significant strides this year, but have been undermined a lot by the inconsistency of Alexander Williams. Williams played pretty efficiently against Baltimore but Chris Bell had fumbling issues. It’s clear that Tennessee is going to need better play at QB to take the next step. 23. Pittsburgh Steelers - The Pittsburgh defense has really struggled allowing A.J. Jefferson to have one of his better games this season. The offense has been there even with the absence of Paul Davenport. They still have an outside shot at winning the AFC North, but defense should be the main priority in the offseason. 24. New York Giants - The Giants were victims to the beginning of the Brad Davis era. The defense which was so good last year has largely been ineffective this year. Part of the blame can be cast on the inefficient offense. The Giants need to return to their defensive ways if they want to start winning again. 25. New Orleans Saints - Well that was a fun shootout win over the Bears! The Saints have nice pieces on offense they just have a long way to go on defense. I don’t need to rehash widely known issues, but instead let’s give props to Sterling Brown for a pretty stellar performance behind a beat-up offensive line. 26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Tampa got a nice victory on the road! Any victory is a good victory for the Bucs, but they had a really nice game overall. Solid performance from Heiden and a good performance from Egloff to round out the victory. Interesting to see if the offensive success sticks in the next game. 27. Arizona Cardinals - Losing to Tampa isn’t an ideal scenario for the Cards. However they have to be excited about the way Eli Austin played in the loss. They were expecting to lose games this year and they are, I don’t think there’s any surprise here. 28. Chicago Bears - The Bears put up a lot of points against the Saints, which is expected, but their defense really struggled outside of getting sacks. Boy did they get a lot of sacks though, they lead the league in sacks, but really struggle if they don’t bring the QB down. 29. Minnesota Vikings - This is the point in the article where I start getting tired lol… The Vikings has the misfortune of playing against Skaggs and as expected they got beat up pretty good. They are finally running a more balanced offense which has helped their defense, but this is a team that obviously has a lot to address in the offseason. 30. Los Angeles Chargers - Matty Swift!!!! I’m happy that Matty Swift is finally getting a chance to start. The Chargers expected another year of rebuilding and that’s what they are getting. Losing your best defensive players will hurt anyone, especially a team at such a talent disadvantage. Let’s sit back and watch the Matty Swift show. 31. Washington Redskins - Reed and Hiller-Weeden are nice pieces on a team that needs a lot of stuff. Luckily they’ll have a nice draft pick to help the cause. 32. Buffalo Bills - Welcome to the David Kaplan era? Buffalo took the ball out of Chad Dess’ hands and gave it to the youngster. I guess they are playing for a draft pick at this point?
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    THEPATRIOT.COM: CONFERENCE USA'S PREMIER NEWS AND ANALYSIS SITE C-USA Weekly Round-Up: Week 2 THE GAMES: Florida Atlantic Owls 41 - 44 Kansas State Wildcats Houston Cougars 24 - 7 Marshall Thundering Herd UTEP Miners 21 - 28 Utah State Aggies East Carolina Pirates 34 - 31 Western Kentucky Hilltoppers Florida International Panthers 20 - 34 Memphis Tigers North Texas Mean Green 21 - 28 San Diego State Aztecs Old Dominion Monarchs 14 - 27 UNLV Rebels Southern Miss Golden Eagles 42 - 27 Rutgers Scarlet Knights Louisiana Tech Bulldogs 7 - 48 USF Bulls UTSA Roadrunners 0 - 30 #17 Georgia Bulldogs Rice Owls 24 - 31 (OT) #20 Kansas Jayhawks Byes: Middle Tennessee, Charlotte, UAB GAME OF THE WEEK: Florida Atlantic Owls 41 - 44 Kansas State Wildcats In the nation's first game of Week 2, Florida Atlantic traveled to Manhattan, Kansas, for what many anticipated would be a simple case of a P5 team paying a small school to come get crushed. The Owls had a different plan. Despite allowing over 300 passing yards to Rahim "I Am The Greatest" Murrell, randye4's new squad hung around until the end, forcing the Wildcats to come from behind in the final quarter to pull out a victory. The Owls were led by redshirt freshman running back Sean Parham's 109 yards and 2 TD and sophomore quarterback Gregory Crowder's 3 total touchdowns. OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: QB Riley West, WKU, 20 of 30 for 285 yards, 3 TD DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: LB Connor Hitchcock, MRSH, 1 INT, 8 Tackles QUOTES OF THE WEEK: "WKU looks scary" -Charlotte HC and C-USA Commissioner @Isaac829 "I AM THE GREATEST. BUT MY DEFENSE SUCKS." - Kansas State QB Rahim Murrell (@HAFFnHAFF) "Holy shit I did it!" - Utah State HC @ZackTyzwyz "That FAU Punter [sic] has a leg on him... Dang" - West Virginia HC @smckenz3 POWER RANKINGS: 1. Rice Owls (0-2) My conscience almost didn't let me put a winless team at #1, but after the last two seasons, Rice holds the benefit of the doubt for this spot until they lose a conference game. And if we're being blunt, most teams in this conference would kill to take a ranked P5 team to overtime on the road. 2. Southern Miss Golden Eagles (1-1) As the owner of the conference's only win through Week 2 (yes, seriously), USM gets ranked above everybody not named Rice by default. 3. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (0-2) The Hilltoppers are rapidly becoming the Houston Rockets of CFBHC. Therefore, they get the three seed for now. 4. Florida Atlantic Owls (0-2) The Owls put up quite a fight against Big 12 team Kansas State, earning them a high spot in these rankings despite the loss. Coach @randye4, a legend from his time at Alabama, appears to already have his new rebuilding project ahead of schedule. 5-14. Everyone Else (mostly 0-2, some 0-1) Beyond that top four, it's still too close to make a meaningful call at this point. Marshall probably has the best chance of jumping out of this group, given their history the last two years, but it's all a mess for now. RECRUITING: Coming soon (Week 3)...
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    Week 2 Mountain West Players of the Week In Week 2 of the 2020 season, the Mountain West Conference went an impressive 7-2 in out of conference play. Air Force seemed to earn its ranking with a big win over Mississippi State, while Hawaii continues to show that it may be a serious contender for the MWC title after a dominant win over BYU. Week 3 will continue out of conference play except for Utah State traveling to take on Air Force at home. Week 2 has some very impressive performances, especially on the offensive side. Here are the MWC’s Players of the Week: Offensive Player of the Week Nico Kaufman apparently moving the ball with shear force of will in Air Force's win vs Mississippi State Air Force's redshirt senior quarterback Nico Kaufman was unleashed in his season debut against Mississippi State, earning him the title of this week's MWC Offensive Player of the Week. Kaufman was unstoppable, going 17 for 22 on passing attempts for 250 yards and 2 touchdowns. He also ran 8 times for 94 yards and another touchdown, displaying his athletic ability all over the field. Kaufman lifted Air Force to a huge win over a skilled Mississippi State team, coming out on top 38-20. Defensive Player of the Week Luke Hodge gingerly placing a Tulsa player on his buttocks during Fresno State's Friday night win Luke Hodge, the redshirt senior outside linebacker for Fresno State is Week 2's MWC Defensive Player of the Week. Hodge manhandled the Tulsa offense, recording 8 tackles and taking the quarterback down once for a sack that stopped a potential scoring drive for Tulsa. When asked about what he would do with his MWC WK2 POTW trophy he said "You guys don't give out trophies for this, all we get is a Rainforest Cafe gift card which I didn't even know was still in business. It's honestly kind of fu-". Got to love that sense of humor! Hodge was key in Fresno State's season opening win against Tulsa and is likely to be a force to be reckoned with in the weeks to come. Special Teams Player of the Week If you think about it, this looks like Phillip is pointing out a football that's about to hit his holder When you think of a crow you think of grace, accuracy, and kicking a football really damn far. That's why Phillip Crow, the redshirt sophomore kicker (and punter!) for Nevada is our Special Teams Player of the Week (see below for a note on this award). Crow drilled two deep kicks in from 46 yards and 40 yards deep, giving Nevada a 6 point boost to pull out a big win against Army. Crow is a truly talented kicker and shows his ability by being both the kicker and the punter for his team, giving the special teams unit a huge weapon in both scoring and field position. Look, we here at the Mountain West Conference want to keep an honest relationship with our fans. After the aforementioned Rainforest Cafe incident, we want to do right by you all. Which is why we are sad to announce that this will be our last week picking a Special Teams Player of the Week. It's not me it's you. However this will allow us to create even dumber captions for our pictures and we would also like to announce that from now on it will be the Rainforest Cafe (C) Player of the Week Award. No, there still won't be trophies. Get over it. A WILD PLACE TO SHOP AND EAT, AND A PROUD SPONSOR OF THE MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE.
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    USC and Notre Dame squared off in a huge test for the PAC-12's preseason favorite A bit of movement in the power rankings this week (just kidding, this is the first power rankings of the season!), with some teams exceeding expectations and others failing to meet them. Remember, if you don't like where you are in these rankings...play/recruit better... 1. Washington State (2-0) By default, last season's Conference Champion starts here, especially as one of only two teams with 2 wins on the short season. 2. Stanford (2-0) Nicholas Garland and Co. have looked really quite good so far. They've got a couple wins over mediocre teams, and a promising roster that appears built for bigger things later in the year. 3. Arizona (1-0) Now that Wrigleyfan is back in charge in Tucson, the Wildcats may actually live up to their tantalizing potential. They certainly looked the part during their big win over Ohio State on Saturday 4. California (1-0) I've actually got Cal as my #25 team in the latest poll...I think they'll be that good at season's end. More balanced and patient this season, their opening win in week 2 over Oregon State was impressive. 5. USC (1-1) This is punishment for not handling a Notre Dame team that they should have waxed. Looked like the sim's most talented team in Week 1, utter refuse in week 2. 6. Arizona State (1-0) Not a great handle on what ASU looks like this year...there's talent, but NDunkelbarger is about as active on the site as my cat. If they're coaching holds up, I think they can make a run for a high-major bowl game. If not... 7. UCLA (0-1) Again, another team that is operating in near-obscurity. JBax, despite the OT loss to Baylor, has a good squad, with a few holes, and has shown he can be a coach that helps, not hurts. 8. Oregon State (1-1) We're giving little brother some props on OSU's first win in a couple seasons and a strong showing against the Bears in week 2. Dare I say, things are looking up for the Barkrats? 9. Colorado (0-1) Got whalloped by SC in the opener, then took a bye week to focus on recruiting. Franz will have this team back in top form shortly. 10. Oregon (0-1) Disastrous start in the blowout loss to Vanderbilt at home. Yeldon did well, but that was about it. 6 points ain't gonna cut it, even against a Top 20 defense. 11. Utah (0-1) Not a great start vs. Stanford. The Utes need more activity from their coach and more consistency from the roster. 12. Washington (0-2) The PAC's only two-loss team, it brings me ever-so-much joy to see the Huskies here. Not because of Dean^2, who's really working hard, but because the Huskies, and Washington state in general, can go to hell.
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    Week #1 OPOTW QB Luke Trickett, USC 26 of 36 for 340 yards, 5 TD, 1 INT, 7 carries for 50 yards, 1 TD vs Colorado A huge performance out of Luke Trickett earns him the first OPOTW award for 2020! He was able to sit down for a quick interview with SageBow! Congrats on the huge win Luke! Your Trojans demolished a solid Colorado team with you throwing 5 touchdowns and running for 1 more. What did you think of the Trojan offense in your season opener? You know, this is my third season starting for the Trojans. And we've put in a lot of work over the past few years to really get this team to the next level. And year after year, we've been getting closer, but we just weren't quite there yet. Sometimes, it was like we weren't quite there talent wise. Sometimes we weren't there with the game prep. Sometimes we weren't there with the gameplan. Sometimes we weren't there with the execution. But last game, it felt like everything was starting to click. We were able to spread the ball really well. I was able to find Mualu open 8 times. It never felt like I was forcing throws to my big play guys. We were just exploiting the mismatches we'd found in our game prep. We were executing. The blocking was there. The routes were there. Everything was there. It's exciting- can you tell I'm excited? It's never felt this good to be the quarterback for the Trojans. And I'm excited to feel even better after the game this week. USC has a treasure trove of talent on this 2020 roster. What are the expectations, and what is the pressure to meet these expectations like? Oh man, there is a lot of pressure. There's definitely a lot of pressure on Coach. It's something that you kinda sense after a while. There's definitely a lot of pressure coming from the boosters. This is a championship quality team and they want to see a championship out of us. And it's definitely something that we can handle. I have absolute faith in this team winning it all. We just have to keep our composure. We can't let the pressure get to us. And I don't think it will. This team has been through a lot these past few seasons. And I've been through a lot these past few seasons. I don't think the pressure is something that we won't be able to handle. I think we've got this. I really do. You're known as a dual threat type of guy, but every quarterback I know has their favorite move. What do you like more: running 40 yards for a touchdown or releasing a 60 TD bomb? Oh, definitely running 40 yards for a touchdown. Throwing a 60-yard bomb feels like I'm leaving it up to God, which I'm now realizing might be why they call it a Hail Mary. Whenever I'm running it in, it's like I'm taking matters into my own hands. I mean, don't get me wrong, I still have a lot of help, but when I'm running, I don't have to worry about the wind. Just gotta make sure I don't get winded. Thanks for sitting down with me for this interview Luke! Before I leave, do you have any shout outs? Just wanna give a shout out to my older sister. She just got engaged over this past Tuesday so I wanna give a shout out to her for always being there for me when I needed her and to wish her luck with her future, as an attorney and a wife. Love you, sis! -------------------------------------------------------------------- Week #1 DPOTW CB Jordan Tucker, Vanderbilt 2 INT, 2 Tackles, 1 TD vs #22 Oregon A big performance out of one of Vanderbilt's top DBs has earned him the first DPOTW award of the year! Jordan Tucker was also able to sit down with Sage for a quick interview. Jordan, great to see you! Incredible performance in a high profile game against Oregon this past week. What was it like being on that field and making those plays? It's great to be here. Last Saturday was the best game of my life. There's a few things that I can do better, QBs are still targeting me too much, but that was easily the best performance of my four years here. This Vanderbilt defense is know for linebackers, linebackers, and linebackers. What do you and the DB crew have to say about that? People can talk about our linebackers all they want. Truth is teams are afraid to throw it over the middle against us. And when they start throwing it deeper and try to work the edges more, they're in trouble. Because we'll be waiting. Last season it came down to the wire, Week 16 against Tennessee to decide who would win the division. Now, preseason media has the Commodores as the favorites for the SEC East. Whats the mood in the locker room about these expectations? We all remember losing the division on the final week last year. It's increased our motivation for this year. We know that it'll be tough and we need to take this one week at a time, but we want to prove our doubters wrong. This is our year. Thanks for sitting down with me today Jordan! Before I leave, do you have any shout outs you'd like to give? Glad to be here. I'd like to give a shoutout to my boy David Pennington, hope he's having a great year in Oakland. Congratulations to all POTW winners and nominees in Week 1! Best of luck for all the talented playmakers in Week 2! Previous National POTW Award Winners
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