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NCAA Football Week 3 Recap: This is why I love College Football

September 20, 2010

Football Fiends!!!

This past Saturday of FOOTBALL GOODNESS encompassed so many examples of why College Football is vastly prefereable to the No Fun League. (And you all know how much I love ALL football!) You just don’t get the passion, the spirit, the excitement, in the NFL that you get on a weekly basis in College Football.

For every Alabama battering Duke (62-13) and Oregon dismantling Portland State (69-0), there was Auburn kicking an OT FG to best Clemson 27-24 or ASU nearly pulling off the big upset in Madison (Wisconsin 20- ASU 19).  No matter what part of the country you live in, or which BCS conference you root for, there was a heart-stopping (quite literally in the case of Michigan State Coach Mark Dantonio) game to tune into.

Michigan State’s controversial last second fake field goal lifted them above Notre Dame 34-31. Notre Dame had to be feeling shades of 2005 USC @ ND with that clock ticking down trickery.

Auburn and Clemson dueled it out the entire game and it took a field goal in overtime for the Tigers to beat the Tigers 27-24. (What is it with all the Tigers in that part of the country, anyway?)

Everyone had Arizona State as the big underdog going into their game at Wisconsin. The Sundevils surprised everyone by nearly pulling off the upset 20-19.  Even UCLA, who started their season 0-2,  pulled off the upset of #23 Houston 31-13.  Speaking of the Pac-10; USC beat Minnesota in highly unimpressive fashion 32-21, Stanford clobbered Wake Forest 68-24 and Oregon State beat Louisville 35-28.

But the biggest game of all of the marquee games in the Pac-10 and, in fact, the country  was Iowa at Arizona. Iowa went into Tucson ranked #9 to Arizona’s #24. People expected it to be a game, but not many thought Arizona would pull off the upset. (Am sure all of AZ’s Pac-10 competitors could have predicted it, though. Let us not forget, The Pac-10 OWNS the Big Ten)

Arizona was up 14-0 at the end of the first quarter. At the end of the 2nd quarter the Wildcats were up 27-7.  In the 3rd quarter Iowa rendered the AZ offense inoffensive and scored 7 to the home team’s 0. 27-14 Arizona heading into the 4th. The Hawkeyes were not going to make this easy as they went on to score 13 in the 4th quarter to even things up.  With 3:57 remaining in the game QB Nick Foles threw a 4 yard pass to William Wright for a touchdown and the Arizona D held the Hawkeyes off for the rest of the game to win it 34-27 in one of the most exciting games of the weekend.

Arkansas-Georgia was another great one. Arkansas ran away with the first 3 quarters. The Razorbacks were up on the Bulldogs 24-10 at the end of the third quarter with QB Ryan Mallet firmly inserting himself into the Heisman race. In the 4th quarter UGA came back to tie the game with under 4 minutes to play. Then, when it looked like this game was heading into overtime, Ryan Mallet lobbed a 40 yard pass to Greg Childs for a touchdown with :15 seconds on the clock.

Back in the Pac-10 for all the big and near wins we had, we also had some big losers. Washington State continued its disappointing record against FBS opponents with a 35-21 loss to SMU. California lost a stunner of a game to mid-major Nevada 52-31 and Washington’s 56-21 performance against Nebraska likely put an end to Jake Locker’s Heisman hopes since he went 4 for 20 on the day for an abysmal 71 yards.

My Trojans have the dubious distinction of being the only FBS team in the country to win each week so far and drop two points in the polls each week. We started at #14, beat Hawaii and moved down to #16. We beat UVA and moved to #18.  We beat Minnesota and moved down to #20.  Sure, they haven’t been overly impressive showings by the men of Troy. But we WON. And sure with the sanctions and everything, we’re bowl ineligible. But STILL it feels like a slap in the face and another way for the polls to punish the current USC team who had nothing to do with Reggie Bush’s shenanigans five years ago. But, I am biased and might have a small chip on my cardinal & gold sheathed shoulder.

College Football season truly is the most wonderful time of the year!

-Your Gridiron Goddess

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The Official Gridiron Goddess NFL Week 2 Picks

September 17, 2010

Week 2 abysmal score 7-8

HA HA HA Oh Man did I ever stink up the joint with last week’s picks. WOW. A truly atrocious 8-8 was my Week 1 record. Let’s hope week 2 is better!

The Official Gridiron Goddess NFL Week 2 picks

Chiefs over Browns

Packers over Buffalo

Ravens over Bengals

Steelers over Titans

Dallas over Chicago

Panthers over Bucs

Cardinals over Falcons

Vikings over Miami

Rams over Raiders

Houston over Washington

Seattle over Denver

Chargers over Jags

NE over Jets

Colts over Giants

Saints over 49ers

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The Official Gridiron Goddess CFB Week 3 Picks: USC will be 3-0 but doesn’t look like a 3-0 team

September 17, 2010

Final Count: 11-5

Hey there Football Fiends,

Are you enjoying the awesome content from Harem member Oh No Romo?

Let’s get to the CFB Week 3 picks:

The Official Gridiron Goddess CFB Week 3 picks:

USC over Minnesota

Georgia over Arkansas

WVU over Maryland

Ohio State over Ohio

VA Tech over ECU

Mizzou over SDSU

Hawaii over Colorado

BYU over Florida State

Florida over Tennessee

Wazzou over SMU

Wisconsin over ASU

Nebraska over Washington

TCU over Baylor

UCF over Buffalo

Texas over Texas Tech

Houston over the hapless Bruins from UCLA

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Fantasy Football Reality Check: Getting Ready For Week 2

September 17, 2010

by Oh No Romo

Week 2 is finally upon us. And I have made a couple of adjustments in preparation for this weekend. I added a wide receiver and dropped a tight end, and no it wasn’t Greg Olson.

I released Ben Watson and picked up Cardinals wide receiver Steve Breaston. I’m not exactly sure what I hope to get out of this Anderson-Breaston combo. Maybe it goes well, and maybe it all goes horribly wrong. I can hope for the former, but fully expect the latter.

That said, he is in my starting line up for Sunday. I benched Chris Chambers, to put in Breaston. We’ll see how the move works out for me. Chambers isn’t gone, because I don’t just want to force him off of Kotite Island.

He’s going to get his time obviously. I don’t expect Breaston and my other starting wide receivers to carry the team to victory. I especially don’t expect that to happen when Roy Williams and Nate Washington are starting for me.

As for the running game, I’m sticking with Jamaal Charles and Jerome Harrison. Hopefully Mangini doesn’t kick me in the nuts again this week and go with Peyton Hillis. Because you know, that would be kind of a “dick move,” as the kids say these days, on Mangini’s part.

Therefore, it’s my duty as a Fantasy owner to lobby for Jerome Harrison’s playing time. DO IT!!!

I’m starting the Detroit D against Philly. Yes it’s a bold move, because I should be starting the Oakland D against the Rams. But you know what, Oakland doesn’t strike me as the type of team to stop the Rams. Call it a gut feeling (bad for me, good for the sake of this column).

As of now the two notable guys I’ve left on the bench are Cadillac Williams and Mario Manningham. If Cadillac lights it up this week and Harrison doesn’t…well then I’ll probably trade Cadillac. We’ll see though.

I’m hoping to start mixing up the line-ups within the next couple of weeks, to make it interesting. Stay tuned, and I’ll see you with the next column on Tuesday. Enjoy the weekend action!

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Put ’em in the Hall: The Ken Anderson Edition

September 16, 2010

This is a new series of columns written by the one and only, Oh No Romo. The series hopes to go over some of the names on the 2011 Preliminary Nominees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. So enjoy!

by Oh No Romo

Ken Anderson belongs in the Hall of Fame! I’ll say it, no problem at all. Any quarterback that can take the Cincinnati Bengals to the Super Bowl surely deserves a spot in Canton.

Ken Anderson

When you hear the name of Ken Anderson, most people my age don’t really know who that is (He retired before I was born, if that’s any indication).

While Boomer Esiason might be more well-known for his time with the Bengals, it’s Anderson who owns all the Bengals career passing records. Anderson leads the team in passing yards (32,838), touchdowns (197), wins (91) and completions (2654).

The Bengals drafted Anderson, from Augustana College in Illinois (D-3 BABY!) in the third round of the 1971 NFL Draft. The draft included such quarterbacks as Dan Pastorini (of Houston), Archie Manning (New Orleans) and Jim Plunkett (New England, but best known for his time with the Raiders).

His draft class also includes Hall of Famers like John Riggins (6th overall pick), Jack Youngblood (LA Rams), Jack Ham (Pittsburgh) and Dan Dierdorf (St. Louis Cardinals). In fact Anderson was selected in front of Lynn Dickey and Leo Hart, who only played three games in his career.

Anderson played 16 seasons in total, all of them with the Bengals. You don’t see many quarterbacks play their entire career with one team. But if it’s any indication of how long Anderson’s played, Brett Favre played 16 seasons with the Packers.

Anderson, went to four Pro Bowls and was named All-Pro once. His All-Pro season, 1981, was all the season he took the Bengals to their first ever Super Bowl. Anderson was fifth in the league in passing (3,754 yards) and third in touchdowns (29), both were career highs. He even threw the fewest interceptions in the league, for players starting the entire season.

After a terrible game in week 1, throwing two interceptions against the Seahawks, Anderson passed for 252 yards and two touchdowns in the win against the Jets.

Anderson’s best game that season came against the Browns on November 29. He completed 80 percent of his passes and threw four touchdowns (two of them to Cris Collinsworth) in the route against Cleveland, 41-21.

Cincy clinched the division with a 12-4 record. It was their first playoff appearance since 1975. (They tied for first in the AFC Central in 1976, but lost both games to Pittsburgh).

The Bengals took care of Buffalo in the Divisional round, 28-21. It was a balmy compared to the conditions they’d play the AFC Championship in.

In subzero temps, the Bengals froze Air Coryell and the San Diego Chargers, 27-7. Anderson passed for two touchdowns, but the Bengals kept the ball on the ground for the most part. Besides, who really wants to catch a football in -30 wind chills?

The dream would stop for the Bengals as despite a three touchdown performance (one rushing) by Anderson, the Bengals fell to the 49ers, 26-21. The MVP of the game was 49ers quarterback Joe Montana. Maybe you heard of him? Apparently, Montana was kind of a big deal! He does those Sketchers commercials now.

The next season, Anderson set the NFL record for completion percentage in a season with 70.55 percent. Saints quarterback Drew Brees broke the record last season with a 70.62 percent completion rate. However, when Anderson set the record, 1982 was a strike shortened season. But that shouldn’t take away from the consistency of Anderson.

Anderson also holds the third highest completion percentage in a game (minimum 20 attempts) in NFL history. Anderson completed 20-of-22 passes against Pittsburgh in 1974. Kurt Warner and Vinny Testaverde are ahead of Anderson.

Anderson wasn’t able to replicate the success of ’81 and ’82. He started only two games in 1985 and retired after the ’86 season.

Anderson is currently 25th All-Time on the NFL career passing list. Had Kurt Warner played another season, he would have passed Anderson. He did finish ahead of his ’71 Draft counterparts, Pastorini, Manning and Plunkett.

Anderson’s 197 touchdown passes (32nd best all-time) puts him ahead of the three quarterbacks mentioned. He’s also ahead of the likes of Troy Aikman, Roger Staubach and Joe Namath, all Hall of Famers.

His career completion percentage of 59.3 percent is 40th best all-time. However, that puts him ahead of Dan Fouts, Warren Moon, Bart Starr,  Fran Tarkenton, Johnny Unitas and John Elway. And again, they are Hall of Famers.

I could probably talk about this subject until I am blue in the face. But there’s plenty of evidence out there to prove that Ken Anderson is a Hall of Famer. He’s been a finalist twice. Hopefully, he’ll get his shot this year.

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Fantasy Football Reality Check: Week 1 Recap

September 14, 2010

by Oh No Romo

The first week of the NFL season is officially done. And as expected, I lost my first Fantasy Football game of the season. But you know what, I only lost by 11 points. The final score was 87-76. So it’s not like I had no shot at winning.

I exceeded expectations with several positions. Jamaal Charles, Nate Washington and the Detroit defense all played beyond the call of duty for me. Washington led the Titans in receiving on Sunday and scored huge on a 56-yard reception against the Raiders.

Charles led the Chiefs in rushing, despite his splitting carries with Thomas Jones. However, Charles clearly made something out of nothing, by rushing for 92-yards, including a 56-yard rush for a touchdown.

My Detroit defense held the Bears to just 19 points. However, the four turnovers helped my Lions stay in this game. Just a FYI, I went up against the Jets defense, if that accounts for anything.

For starting quarterback, Derek Anderson was…well…he was Derek Anderson. He almost threw for 300 yards, but did lose a fumble.

I did have my letdowns of course. Every team has them. Jerome Harrison, Chris Chambers and Greg Olson all let me down.  I’m getting a weird feeling that Peyton Hillis will be getting more carries over Jerome Harrison. I’m not sure what I ever did to anger the Mangini, but please, PLEASE, give the kid more carries.

Chambers only had 14-yards on Monday night against the Chargers. Hey Matt Cassel, I know you’re my back-up quarterback in fantasy, but would it hurt you to throw to Chambers more?

As for Greg Olson, I feel let down the most by him. He fumbled the ball in the red zone. Olson has proven himself to be a favorite target of Jay Cutler’s, but that wasn’t the case on Sunday. So…Let’s pick it up, can we?

I’m not sure if I can get the same kind of production this Sunday. That said, adjustments will have to be made. I’ll have another fantasy column on Friday. Until then, keep dancing!

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Week 2 Pac-10 Wrap up: Oregon & Stanford lead the way

September 12, 2010

Football Fiends,

It was an interesting weekend for the Pac-10.  With the exception of Stanford @ UCLA, the Pac-10 went undefeated against four different conferences, including future Pac-12 member Colorado.  Let’s take a look:

USC vs UVA : – 17-14 USC. Where did last week’s offense go? We sputtered offensively and GOD you know I love my Trojan football but when you’re heading into the 2nd quarter and the score is still 0-0,  AND you’re sitting up in Row 90 with fog rolling in… well its not all that exciting. The good news is our defense looked much better this week. The bad news is it was against a mediocre at best ACC team.  USC was up 14-7 at the half,  17-7 near the end of the 4th, and then the defense allowed a late TD from the Cavaliers.  Winning 17-7 is one thing. Winning 17-14 is another and it is very strange to win and feel like you lost. I am very worried for the start of Pac-10 play. With USC @ Minnesota next week and @ Washington State the following week we should head into the meat of our schedule 4-0 but have no real clear indicator of whether this team is good, out of shape, or just plain bad.  Our next home game is vs. Washington and GULP–Steve Sarkisian and Jake Locker scare me.

Oregon @ Tennessee – 48-13, Oregon. The Ducks are a force to be reckoned with. They went down to Rocky Top and hung 48 points on the Volunteers.  Oh and by the way, those 48 points are the most allowed @ Tennessee since Washington State scored 52 points in 1988. With Oregon now ranked #6 in the Coaches poll, they are within striking distance of being a national title contender.

Stanford @ UCLA – 35-0, Stanford. I said in my 2010 Pac-10 Preview (Part One) that I wasn’t sure Stanford would be able to match last season’s 8 wins. I have changed my mind. Stanford is the main challenger to Oregon for the Pac-10 title. The Cardinal went into Pasadena and shut out Coach Neuheisel’s Bruins. Stanford being so strong is not that much of a suprise. Andrew Luck is one hell of an efficient passer, runner and clock manager. What is shocking, even to this Trojan is how bad UCLA is. Stanford was 9-16 on 3rd down conversions to UCLA’s 1-9. UCLA turned the ball over 4 times, Stanford never did. Kevin Prince threw 2 interceptions to Luck’s zero. UCLA fumbled twice, Stanford never did. Jim Harbaugh went in and decimated the Bruins.   Oh, and by the way, Stanford pitched that shutout on the road without two of their best players – LB Shayne Skov and WR Chris Owusu.  It will be interesting to see how Stanford’s season plays out. UCLA – well, they might finish ahead of Washington State, but right now it’s hard to imagine them really competing in the top half of the conference.

Cal vs Colorado – 52-7 Cal.  Colorado is no powerhouse, but they may be nervous about their 2012 date to join the Pac-12 after being totally dominated by the Golden Bears in Berkeley. Cal’s new defense was remarkably efficient in dominating the line of scrimmage. Colorado turned over the ball five times, lost two fumbles and QB Tyler Hansen threw three interceptions.

Washington  vs Syracuse -41-20, Washington. It is clear that this Washington team is on the rise. Sure, they absolutely SHOULD have beaten Syracuse, but 2-3 years ago this game would not have been a gimme.  QB Jake Lockers connected with WR Jermaine Kearse for three teams en route to their convincing victory over the “Cuse.  After getting off to a slow first quarter start, the Huskies rolled with Locker completing 22 of 33 and hitting seven different receivers. Washington’s offense was expected to be one of the best in the conference with Locker under center. Last week against BYU, the Huskies faltered. By the second quarter Saturday night, they hit their stride.

Washington State vs Montana State -23-22 Wazzou. Well hey, lookie there the Cougars won a game. Never mind that it took a herculean 4th quarter effort to make it happen. The crowds were rejoicing in Pullman Saturday night.  Oh and that effort was required against an FCS opponent. I’m worried about my Trojans in Pac-10 play, but I am terrified for Wazzou. This program needs wins to gain the confidence to keep winning. And I am not sure they have quite the firepower for that yet.

Arizona State vs Northern Arizona -41-20 ASU. Looks impressive, right? It really isn’t. NAU is another FCS school that the perennial Pac-10  pre-season contender (until they implode) ASU should have beat without breaking a sweat.  The game was 17-10 at the half and 27-20 at the end of three. Only QB Steven Threet’s two 4th quarter passes put the game out of reach for the NAU Lumberjacks.

Arizona vs Citadel –52-6 Arizona. This was just a good old-fashioned rout of another outmatched FCS team down in Tucson.  I mean, do we really gain anything beating up on non-FBS conference teams. Sure Nic Grisby rushed for three touchdowns including one that was 62 yards. Sure QB Nick Foles completed 17 0f 22 passes in three quarters, but do we really know how this team will stack up against Oregon and Stanford? That is the problem I have with these cupcake out of conference schedules. Arizona is good, but Pac-10 play is brutal and it will determine just how good these Wildcats are.

-Your Gridiron Goddess