Posts Tagged ‘Wazzou’

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The Official Gridiron Goddess CFB Picks: Week 3

September 24, 2010

Recap: 13-3

Hey Football Fiends-

I am taking the week off from Official NFL Picks. I will however let you know how I fare this week in my pick em league. I’ve been stinking up the joint so far this season so…

But College Football! YAY! Here are my picks for this week. I am rooting for Oregon State to upset Boise State, after all, Oregon State painted their practice field blue to prepare for the Smurf Turf.

Gridiron Goddess Week 3 College Football Picks

USC over Washington State

Texas over UCLA

VA Tech over Boston College

Penn State over Temple

GA Tech over NC State

Florida State over Wake Forest

Georgia over Mississippi State

Alabama over Arkansas

Stanford over Notre Dame

Arizona over California

Nevada over BYU

South Carolina over Auburn

Oregon over ASU

Tennessee over UAB

Florida over Kentucky

Oregon State over Boise State

-Your Gridiron Goddess

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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

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The Official Gridiron Goddess 2010 Pac-10 Preview: Part 2

September 1, 2010

Getting it in just under the wire!!! FOOTBALL SEASON STARTS TOMORROW! OMG, Thank You gods of football for seeing us all safely through another long, long, long offseason.

The 2010 Pac-10 Preview: Conclusion

by Gridiron Goddess

WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS

Washington State. (What you can’t see is me shaking my head.) Well, I am not the first writer/blogger/fan to say this: They cannot get any worse. They really really can’t. There are 120 FBS football teams and last season the Cougars ranked 119th in total offense and 120th in total defense. Pitiful doesn’t even begin to describe the team they fielded last year in Pullman.

Last year’s Wazzou offensive line gave up 53 sacks.  I’m thinking sophomore QB Jeff Tuel has to be suffering from post traumatic stress syndrome from all the times he went down last year. They did win ONE game last season, so I suppose the Cougars COULD get worse this year, but that is just beside the point.  It has to get better for Alumnus and Coach Paul Wulff. He took over in December 2007 and this year’s team will FINALLY contain players he recruited.

All eyes will be on Washington State this year, will this be the year the pathetic program finally turns around and contends for at least the middle of the Pac-10 pack?

Not this year. Look for Wazzou to improve a bit on both sides of the ball, but still finish dead last in the Pac-10.

Washington State opens its season at Oklahoma State on Saturday, September 4th.

ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS

Dennis Erickson would appear to be on the hot seat, wouldn’t he? I mean he has all this talent, and each year the Sun Devils are SUPPOSED to contend for the Pac-10 crown and then… they fall apart. They implode. They self-destruct. (Shall I twist the knife in a little further Pat? Remember 1987? USC 55 – ASU 0. But I digress ;-)…)  Surely Erickson’s Sun Devils will have to improve on last year’s 4-8 record for his job to be secure.

This offseason, one of ASU’s issues was at quarterback. As in, who would the Sun Devil starting QB be. They waited until August 31st to name Michigan transfer Steven Threet the 2010 starting QB. Threet started eight games at Michigan in 2008 before transferring. Coach Erickson has not ruled out sophomore Brock Oseweiler seeing playing time at QB. Now doesn’t that just make you want to strangle him ASU Fans? Stop being so wishy-washy, pick a QB, pick a game plan and fricking STICK WITH IT. Erickson doesn’t seem able to just stick with a plan at ASU and that lack of consistency has been apparent in the on field results.

But hey- Threet also seems to suffer from this disease of indecision. ASU is his third school. He spent the Spring of 2007 at Georgia Tech before transferring to Michigan in 2008. At Michigan he was the leading passer in 2008, but he was not a good match for RichRod’s offense. So maybe this will be a match  made in heaven. A union of commitment-phobes.

My prediction is that only Wazzou will finish lower in the Pac-10 than Arizona State. And next season the Sun Devils will have a new coach.

Arizona State opens their season at home against Portland State on Saturday, September 4th.

UCLA BRUINS

Rick Neuheisel (and his big giant forehead) enters his third season as head coach of that team in Westwood. Their 2009 offense was ranked 88th in the nation. But let’s not forget this is a team that has been beset by QB injuries so severe it is almost comical. (OK, Let’s be honest, it IS comical for Trojan fans.) Even this season is not without injury, as QB Kevin Prince has a torn back muscle from camp that is still on the mend. Neuheisel and former SC assistant coach Norm Chow are installing their version of the Pistol offense in Westwood this season, which should prove to be a good move for the Bruins.  Prince will be backed up by sophomore Richard Brehaut with junior college transfer Darius Bell sitting on the third string. Bell is a more athletic QB who seems to be what UCLA needs for their new offense. Anyway, the point is, remember when UCLA lost two QBs in one pre-season practice? They’ve learned from that, and it shouldn’t happen again this year.

UCLA’s version of the Pistol offense is the Revolver, which looks to make use of a revolving QB plan – at least in the opener against Kansas State. Depth on the O-Line will be an issue for the Bruins with some academic ineligibility and injury issues hitting their bench. Oh and don’t forget the player (Xavier Su-a-Filo) who is on a LDS Mission. The starting five must stay healthy or Prince is in trouble.

On another note, UCLA has new road jerseys this year. Gone is the effeminate powder blue, replaced with navy blue (the stripes and numbers).

I’m thinking its a 7 win season for the Bruins.

UCLA opens its season at Kansas State on Saturday, September 4th.

CAL GOLDEN BEARS

Well Cal opens their season against powerhouse UC Davis, so that tells us a lot. I’m sorry, but I have no patience for big teams that schedule cupcakes. And plenty FBS teams do. (SEC I am looking at you. Try scheduling Ohio State instead of Louisiana-Monroe for f’s sake. But I digress… again…) Anyway, back to Cal.  Cal’s QB is Kevin Riley and he is the key to their success. When Riley is on, Cal wins. When Riley is off, Cal falls apart. And consistency has never been Kevin Riley’s strong suit.  Wide receiver was one of the weak spots on last year’s team and was a big factor in Riley’s lack of consistency.  True freshman wideout Keenan Allen could go a long way towards bringing some much needed consistency to Riley’s offense. Allen is the most highly-rated recruit Coach Tedford has ever had.

Of course, Cal’s running game has a huge hole where first round draft pick Javid Best used to run his plays. Shane Vereen is another running back out of Berkeley who looks to fill Best’s shoes for the Golden Bears.

Cal also has some mental weak spots. They were blown out five times last season and when they get too far down, the mistakes grow even greater and build upon each other until they have a near disaster on their hands. This also speaks to some offensive consistency. That WILL go a long way to healing what ails Tedford’s Golden Bears.

Defensively, Cal was decent against the run in 2009, but struggled against the pass. Cal has one of the best linebackers in the Pac-10 in Mike Mohamed, but the other three LB spots in the Bears’ 3-4 D are green. Time will tell, I suppose.

Cal opens the season at home against UC Davis on Saturday, September 4th.

WASHINGTON HUSKIES

Make no mistake, USC will be out for revenge on October 2nd at the Coliseum. Last season’s shocking loss to the Huskies at the hands of former USC Assistant Coach Steve Sarkisian HURT, y’all.  But that aside, let’s give Coach Sark a big round of applause. In 2008, UDub went 0-12 and last season they went 5-7, which by any other standard would not be a good season but after the slide into the depths of suckitude the Huskies had been on for a number of years, 5-7 was something to celebrate.

We will know soon if the 2010 Huskies will be an even better team as they open their season at BYU. Talk about trial by fire. But then, Washington is not one to schedule patsies even in their down years.

QB Jake Locker is making a run for the Heisman and the hype alone should do a lot to elevate this Husky team and make them hungry for wins. The team returns all five starters on the offensive line – led by all-conference candidate Jermaine Karse. Sophomore Chris Polk started last year at tailback, wide receiver and defensive back and was the first freshman in school history to rush for more than 1,000 yards.  All reports on the Husky defense are that they were a pleasant surprise in training camp.

2008 was rough and had Coach Sark not gotten in there and turned it significantly around, things could have been bleak for years for the Huskies. After last season, they know how to win. And last season many of their seven losses came by just a few points. This year, they will know how to close the gap and the Huskies should be bowl eligible for the first time since 2002 at season’s end.

Washington opens its season at BYU on Saturday, September 4th.