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Posts Tagged ‘Texas Tech’

How the Conferences Rank, 1-12: Week 4

As an accompanying post to today’s re-ranking, here’s the entire F.B.S. conference breakdown in terms of average P.S.R. 1-124 ranking. It’s not entirely fair to include the Independent programs among the true conferences, seeing that there’s only four Independent teams, but it does give a slight slice-of-life taste of where that quartet stands in the big picture. The listings include the average ranking, highest team ranking and number of teams in the top 25 in parentheses. Without further ado:

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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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      A Few Talking Points for Confident Teams

      Nick Saban is tired of everyone loving his team. No, not just tired – Saban is upset, and you won’t like Nick Saban when he’s upset, as beat reporters from Toledo to East Lansing to Baton Rouge to Miami to Tuscaloosa can attest. Said Saban on Wednesday, upon being asked how much time his backups might see in Saturday’s game against Western Kentucky, “when you people start writing stuff about people that we’re playing that doesn’t give them the proper respect, that’s not fair. It’s not fair to them, to their players who work hard. It’s not fair to our players, who need to respect them.” And then he got upset.

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        No. 61: Texas Tech

        Oh, irony. When Texas Tech replaced Mike Leach with Tommy Tuberville, it did so under the presumption that Tuberville’s defensive credentials would lend greater balance to program defined primarily by its pitch-and-catch offensive system – even if the Red Raiders had played surprisingly stout defense over periods of Leach’s decade-long tenure. Instead, Tech has remained strong offensively, averaging at least 33.1 points per game in each of the last two years, while undergoing a meteoric nosedive on defense. In 2010, the Red Raiders allowed 9.5 more points per game than in Leach’s final season; last fall, the Raiders gave up a program-record 39.3 points per game, including 66 points to both Oklahoma State and Baylor. It’s safe to say that things haven’t gone as planned. Perhaps you’re not surprised to hear that Tuberville is on his third defensive coordinator in three years.

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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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            For 13 Teams, Losing Culture Carries Over

            Middle Tennessee State is in the same boat as 12 other programs in college football. The Blue Raiders, like the dozen others, enters 2012 on at least a five-game losing streak. How this team stumbled over the second half of last season raises some important questions about the program’s future under Rick Stockstill, whose career record at Middle Tennessee now falls under .500 after six years with the program. For nearly half of the 13 teams, last year’s sluggish finish has led to significant changes: six have since made a coaching change. Middle Tennessee opted to stand pat, but like every team that heads into the fall on at least a five-game losing streak, changes are afoot.

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              Big 12 Quarterbacks and the N.F.L. Draft

                 Here’s the theory floated by The Big Lead’s Jason McIntyre: Pull back the throttle on the Robert Griffin III hype machine, because while he had a superb junior season, his numbers were inflated significantly by the poor brand of pass defense played in the Big 12. The same could be said of former Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who has rocketed up N.F.L. draft charts, as well as former Oklahoma State quarterback Brandon Weeden, wrote Jason. As evidence, he points to the fact that not one Big 12 team ranked in the top 30 nationally in pass defense.

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                The Big 12 Erupts With… Actual News!

                After months of anticipation, the Big 12 entered the offseason with a flurry. Step one: West Virginia, in the fold. The Mountaineers were able to file official separation papers from the Big East, with the two parties agreeing on a $20 million exit fee, though neither could get on the same page when it comes to the fashion with which the program alters its conference affiliation – the Mountaineers say they’re leaping to the Big 12, while the Big East says it voted to “terminate” West Virginia’s membership in the league. Semantics, and where you stand at the bargaining table dictates where you lie on the topic.

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                  The Countdown

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