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Posts Tagged ‘Oklahoma State’

Pick 10, F.B.S. Notebook: Week 3 (Sept. 15)

Do you remember the last time Notre Dame took a trip to East Lansing? You might not remember the game’s first 60 minutes and change, but that’s fine: things didn’t get wild until overtime, when Michigan State answered a Notre Dame field goal with the most audacious coaching decision of the 2010 season. Now you remember, right? Dan Conroy is lined up for the potentially game-tying 46-yard field goal; Aaron Bates, the punter and team captain, was the holder; tight end Charlie Gantt was lined up one spot inside from the edge to Conroy’s right. The call: “Little Giants.” The snap went to Bates, as expected – and then came the unexpected. You’ll see the rest of the play later tonight, when the Irish and Spartans meet in one of the day’s marquee games. Let’s run down the entire weekend’s action.

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    Pick 10, F.B.S. Notebook: Week 2 (Sept. 8)

    Let’s not beat around the bush: this isn’t a great week. I mean, it’s great – better than what we’re used to, better than any non-football weekend – but it’s not great, all things considered. There’s no Michigan and Alabama to end the night; there’s no prime-time game on ABC at all, in fact. Instead, we’ll close our night with Nebraska and U.C.L.A., Georgia and Missouri and, later on, Arizona and Oklahoma State. Very, very intriguing games. But with perhaps the exception of Georgia, depending on how highly you think of the Bulldogs, these games don’t carry any title implications. That doesn’t make the games any less interesting – or change the fact that every game, especially while teams find their footing, carries some level of importance. Let’s run down the entire weekend’s action.

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      Next Up for Savannah State: The Seminoles

      Savannah State lost to Oklahoma State by 84 points. It could have been worse. Head coach Steve Davenport called Mike Gundy’s coaching style over the game’s final three quarters a “tremendously classy act.” “[T]his thing could have gotten even worse… I am graciously appreciative of the way he handled the game.” Savannah State lost by 84 points, but as even Davenport admitted in his postgame press conference, it could have been worse – the Cowboys could have hit triple-digits with ease, could have buried the Tigers, could have actually hurt the Tigers had Gundy kept his team’s foot down for the entirety of four quarters. Gundy was kind.

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        Poor, Poor, Terrible, Awful Savannah State

        A few notes on Savannah State, which had to know it was walking into a minefield. The Tigers have won two games in two years, with both victories coming over North Carolina Central – 33-30 last fall, 28-21 in 2010. The Tigers lost seven games by 20 or more points a season ago. According to those in the know, Savannah State is one of the worst F.C.S. teams in the country.

        And the worst F.C.S. team in the country drew Mike Gundy and Oklahoma State, of all teams. While breaking in a new quarterback, a few new receivers and a few new offensive linemen, the Cowboys’ walk-ons would have dominated Savannah State.

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          No. 32: Oklahoma State

          It’s time to stop and smell the roses, which makes sense: Oklahoma’s state flower is the rose, after all. Oklahoma State has won 41 games over the last four years, the second-most in the Big 12. The Cowboys own the Big 12’s best record during conference games since 2009. Last fall, the program notched its first Big 12 championship and its first outright championship since 1948, when it took home the Missouri Valley Conference crown. The Cowboys just won 12 games in a season for the first time in program history; they ended the season ranked third in the final A.P. Poll, the highest end-of-season ranking in school history. In November, O.S.U. held leads of 10-0, 24-0 and 44-3 before cruising to a 44-10 win over Oklahoma – only the Cowboys’ 18th win in the rivalry, but certainly the most satisfying. Oklahoma State should take some time to appreciate all that has been accomplished over the last four seasons, and doubly so when it comes last fall’s wonderful success. But don’t wait too long: September’s coming fast, and being elite once comes with a price – everyone expects you to do it again.

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            A.P.R. Scores Viewed at 2014-15 Level

            The latest Academic Progress Rates, released yesterday by the N.C.A.A., uses the baseline of a four-year score of 900 for postseason eligibility. By that standard, all 120 F.B.S. programs – not yet 124 when this data was compiled – earn a passing grade.

            But beginning with the 2014-15 academic year, the baseline to avoid penalties will increase to 930, putting a few F.B.S. programs in danger of suffering one or more of several potential penalties: a postseason ban, a loss of scholarships or a loss of practice time, for example.

            According to the N.C.A.A., an A.P.R. score of 930 equates to a graduation rate of roughly 50 percent. While the current rate of 900 remains in place for the next two years, the increased standard has the potential to impact a handful of B.C.S. and non-B.C.S. conference programs.

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              The Best Saturday Ever! (Until Nov. 10)

              It’s official: Alabama’s trip to L.S.U. on Nov. 3 will be in prime time. Surprise, surprise. All that’s left is to find a seat and cancel any and all previous engagements — and now might be a good time to start laying the groundwork for a cold, if you’re one of the unlucky few due to make an appearance at a wedding on the first Saturday of November.

              That’s not all that’s cooking on Nov. 3. There’s another date between Oregon and U.S.C., this time in the Coliseum, which should likewise be under consideration for an 8 p.m. start on the East Coast. There’s Missouri at Florida. Nebraska at Michigan State. Oklahoma State at Kansas State. Among others. It’s the best weekend of the college football season.

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                Five Transfers to Watch in the Big 12

                Charlie Weis’ first recruiting class at Kansas included five F.B.S. transfers, including three from his old stomping grounds in South Bend. The remaining pair will sit out this coming season: Jake Heaps and former Oklahoma wide receiver Justin McCay will be key to K.U.’s success a year down the road, but neither will contribute to the Jayhawks’ cause come September. The three Notre Dame transfers, however, will serve in major roles for K.U. in Weis’ first season.

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                  The Countdown

                  A bottom-to-top assessment of the F.B.S. landscape heading into the 2012 season.