WMD: 1998 Colts vs 2010 Rams

This segment of WMD (Weller’s Musing and Divination) came via a suggestion from Bryan, which he mentioned in this post. The suggestion was to compare the 1998 Colts team with the 2010 Rams team. The ’98 season was Peyton Manning’s rookie year with the Colts and this 2010 season is obviously going to be Sam Bradford’s rookie year with the Rams. The Colts were coming off an abysmal 3-13 season that landed them the top pick in the 98 Draft. The Rams are coming off an abysmal 1-15 season that landed them the top pick in the 10 Draft. Colts top receiver, Marvin Harrison was entering his third season and had yet to really put together a great season. Rams top receiver, Donnie Avery is entering his third season and has yet to really put together a great season. It was Colts head coach, Jim Mora’s first year with the team. It’s Rams head coach, Steve Spagnuolo’s second year with the team. The Colts star running back, Marshall Faulk, who was easily the best player on the team, was entering his fifth season and was coming off a good season in which he was able to play in three more games than he had the previous year. The Rams star running back, Steven Jackson, who is easily the best player on the team, is entering his seventh season and is coming off a great season in which he was able to play in three more games than he had the previous year. The Colts had finished dead last in the worst division in the league the previous year. The Rams finished dead last in the worst division in the league last year. Also, when all else failed the Colts had the small bright spot that was their punter, Chris Gardocki. And, when all else fails the Rams have the small bright spot that is their punter, Donnie Jones. Continue reading

Friday 5 – Our Football Teams

For those of you that haven’t been counting down for nearly six months, football season officially starts in less than five weeks with the first games of the college season being on Thursday, September 2. This means I thought it would be a good time for us to evaluate our personal desires for how we would (realistically) like our respective teams to fare this season. Bryan and I are both Tennessee Vols fans, he’s a Missouri Tigers fan, I’m an Indianapolis Colts fan and he’s a St. Louis Rams fan. So for our Friday 5 I’ll put up the schedule for each game, how many wins we expect/hope that team to get and at then end for the final part, to complete the ‘5’ in Friday 5 I will put up a total. I will also plan on putting up some sort of weekly chart or graph or both or something to provide something to look at for the progressions our teams our making towards the goals that we are setting for them. Let’s get started: Continue reading

Consolidated Preseason NCAA Football Rankings

I have compiled NCAA football preseason rankings from a wide range of sources. I’m linking to each one and then including a chart at the bottom showing the rankings side by side and then put in an average ranking for each team and also and adjusted average. The adjusted average only includes the rankings from sources that actually included the team in their rankings. Rivals and Sports Illustrated are the only two sources I used that ranked all 120 teams. I took the top 70 from each of those sources and came up with 75 schools. For the rankings that didn’t have a school included, I gave the excluded schools a default ranking for that source that would be the next highest rank. So if a source only ranked their top 25 then the other 50 teams on my list that weren’t included automatically got the ranking of 26. That way the fact that they would impact the averages in comparison to one another. If you have any questions please feel free to ask in the comments section below. Continue reading

Sportsmanship Question

Today’s post is a very simple question.  I’m curious to hear other people’s thoughts on this.  I’ll give you a little back story before I put up my poll.

Today, my girlfriend and I went to a regional softball game between Mizzou and Illinois.  We were only there for about 20 minutes because there was a huge line of storms headed our direction.  We saw about five hitters from Illinois and then the game was postponed for the evening.  Illinois did manage to scratch across one run in that short time.  That’s where my question comes from.

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Why It Is So Hard To Watch Big 10 Basketball

Watching Big Ten basketball is tough. I’m not saying all the teams are bad. I think Michigan State is pretty darn good. It’s just that the games are boring. Really boring. Thursday night the sporting world got a great example of that: Minnesota 59, Illinois 36. The score was 22-16 at the half.

How could anybody enjoy watching a team score 36 points? Illinois’ leading scorer for the game scored nine points. Nine! For everyone’s information, there are 40 minutes in a college basketball game – the Illini didn’t even crack a point a minute, let alone a basket a minute. Illinois shot 29.4% from the floor, Minnesota shot a sort-of respectable 40.8%.

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My Field of 65 Prediction

This is pretty early considering Selection Sunday isn’t for another month and a half, but I thought I’d put up a prediction just for kicks. I’m listing the teams along with what seeding I think they’ll have. Let me know what you think in a comment. Continue reading

Early Game Thoughts

I have a little time before I head out to the tailgate before my Tigers take on the vaunted SEMO juggernaut, so I figured I’d throw out a couple early game thoughts.

There are 4 ranked teams playing right now and none of them are playing well.  I’m watching the Ohio State-Ohio game, and OSU looks awful.  The Bobcats’ starting QB was knocked out of the game after a huge hit and it led the way for a fluffy haired backup named Boo.  There is no way Ohio should even be kind of close in this game, but they’re up 7-6 with 3:54 left in the second.

Marshall is beating Wisconsin 14-10 in Madison.  I would be watching this game, but I can’t find my remote.  Wiscy’s Quarterback is only 3/8 passing, but two of those completions have gone for a combined 78 yards.  PJ Hill has 13 carries for 46 yards.

Illinois has just scored another TD on Eastern Illinois to make it 19-7.  Juice Williams is 8/13 for 36 yards a TD and 2 INTs.  I expected a little more from Juice after he passed all over Mizzou last week.  We made him look like a Heisman contender, which concerns me.

Auburn just went through a scoreless first quarter with Southern Mississippi.  I think the Tigers just punched one it to make it 7-0 early in the second.

Ohio just went into halftime with a 7-6 lead.  Looking a little too far ahead, OSU?

Mizzou-Illinois from the Jones Dome

Like most Mizzou fans, I couldn’t wait to put yesterday’s game in the rear view mirror.  It was nothing more than a trap game for us.  As we saw last year, a victory means very little, but a loss could cost us a shot at a National Title.

First off, I’d like to point out that Mizzou and Illinois are not rivals.  They are in the Big 10, we are in the Big 12.  When Illinois plays Ohio State and Michigan, I pull for Illinois.  When the team’s fans tailgate, they set up right next to one another.  This doesn’t happen at a Mizzou-kansas game. This game was simply, “Sure, we don’t like you today, we’ll be over it tomorrow.”

Now, having said all that, all these reasons make this game a whole lot of fun.  It was beautiful day for tailgating and there was plenty of it.  We showed up around 2 for the 7:30 kickoff.  We made our way around the PowerMizzou.com tailgate for a little while (great food there), then wandered around some parking lots before ending up at the Official Mizzou Tailgate.  Beer was $6.50 there, so we didn’t stay long.  Eventually, we ran into a friends tailgate over by The Landing, where the beer was free.

As the picture above shows, fans intermingled all day.  I met several Illinois fans who would tell me that they just hoped the Illini would keep it close.  That eased my nerves ever so slightly.

As for the game, I think there were more Mizzou fans in there, but not by a wide margin.  It was a neat atmosphere, even if the Jones Dome isn’t the greatest.  We had an Illinois group to our left, who seemed to think the Illini had very little chance of actually pulling out a victory. Our seats weren’t terrible, not great either, upper deck row DD.

I predicted a 41-27 scoreline, I thought the 68 combined points would be about right.  (Side note:  My girlfriend countered with a 52-38 prediction.  Not bad.)  I wasn’t expecting our D to be completely unable to stop Juice Williams’ passing attack.  Unfortunately, we kept getting burned on the same exact play, which got really, really annoying.  I’d imagine that will get worked on in practice this week and won’t happen again.  As you know, the game ended with a combined 94 total points and 1081 yards of total offense.

As for our offense, I know we hung 52 points on a good Illinois team, but really didn’t play all that well.  This is a scary proposition for opposing defenses on our schedule.  At times they were just out of kilter and I saw more drops yesterday than it seems like we had all of last year.  I chalk that up to it being the first game.  We’ll get Denario Alexander back and look out.

Overall, I was just happy to get out with a win.  From what I understand, Jeremy Maclin’s injury is only a sprain, MRI pending.  He’ll have some time to rest since we don’t play anyone in the next 4 weeks. JMac’s 99-yd kick return was a key turning point since it squashed any momentum Illinois had gained in the 2nd Quarter.

Overall, it was great day.  Perfect day for tailgating, Tiger football, and victory.

Happy College Football Season!

I’m currently watching the riveting South Carolina-North Carolina St. primetime Thursday night football game.  At this point, I would watch Western Wyoming A&M play North Oklahoma Community College.  I’m sure most of you feel the same way.

I just got my tickets to the (6) Mizzou vs. (20) Illinois game for this Saturday.  I’ll take plenty of pictures and give a full recap on Monday.  For the record, I’m quite nervous since Illinois is a very, very good team, however, I think Mizzou will be fully prepared and win 41-27.

Now for a few predictions.  I think the National Championship game will be USC vs. Oklahoma.  I know you (Weller) are devastated that there is no SEC team, but I think they will beat each other up so much that no team will really come out on top.  Georgia may ultimately have the best team, but they play six teams ranked in the Top 25 with two of those games coming at LSU and at Auburn late in the season.  I just don’t think they’ll be able to run that gauntlet, plus the SEC Championship game.  If they can, they will be more than deserving of that title shot.

I don’t think anyone will challenge USC this season.  If they can beat Ohio State, and hopefully they do, the Trojans won’t be truly tested for the rest of the season.  As for the Sooners, I feel they are the class of the Big 12, unfortunately.  They return a dominant offsensive line plus Sam Bradford and I don’t see them losing.  My Tigers are fully capable of going 12-0, or 11-1, but I don’t see them being able to best the Sooners in the Big 12 Title Game.  That game is in being played at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, which will be helpful to the North team that represents the conference.

Anyway, strap in for the next couple weeks.  We’ll see just how wrong my predictions are.

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