Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Hawkeye Defense....


One thing sticks out at me as I look at the Iowa football program: fundamentals. This may be the most fundamentally sound football team we face this year. It all starts on the defensive side of the ball for the Hawkeyes. This team has ridden its defense to the Orange Bowl. Led by venerable coordinator Norm Parker, the Hawkeye defense is a direct reflection of his personality: stingy, tough, no nonsense - old school if you will. I'm not going to get into the game breakdown yet - that comes later. Today I just want to familiarize Jacket fans with who they'll see on January 5th & where they'll line up.
Statistically the Hawkeyes are very good, ranking 10th in the FBS in scoring defense at 15.5 points allowed per game. Their strength is in defending the pass as nationally they rank 9th in pass defense, allowing only 165 yards per game. They ranked 31st against the run at a meager 122 yards per game. Overall the Iowa defense ranks 11th nationally with 287 yards per game allowed. On the year they have forced 14 fumbles and rank 5th in the country in interceptions with 20 - both outstanding numbers.
Schematically the Hawks play a 4-3 defense in a "bend but don't break" style. They are extremely disciplined and rarely out of position. This will prove very helpful to them in facing our spread option. One thing I also noticed in the three games I was able to watch is that they tackle very, very well. Again, fundamentally strong. They don't blitz frequently, relying on their front 5 or 6 to get pressure & force mistakes with 5 guys in coverage.

Four Hawkeyes made 1st team All Big 11 this season - DE Adrian Clayborn, LB Pat Angerer, CB Amari Spievey & S Tyler Sash. The characters:
  • Defensive Tackles: #46 Christian Ballard (6'5", 285, Jr.) & #95 Karl Klug, (6'4", 260, Jr.) Ballard & Klug are a bit undersized & rely on quickness as opposed to brute strength. Both hold the point of attack & keep opposing linemen off their linebackers, allowing them to make plays.
  • Defensive End: two very fine players in #94 Adrian Clayborn (6'3", 282, Jr.) & #91 Broderick Binns (6'2", 255, So.) are a real strength of this defense. Clayborn may be Iowa's best overall player. Strong against both run & pass, he is a physical presence that can handle double teams. Binns is smaller & a more of a rush end with an incredibly long wing span.
  • Linebackers: #49 A.J. Edds (6'4", 244 Sr.), #42 Jeremiha Hunter (6'2", 235, Jr.), & # 43 Pat Angerer (6'1" 235, Sr.). These guys make the plays, particularly Angerer, who always seems to be around the ball. They are very physical & shed blocks well.
  • Corners: #28 Shaun Prater (5'11" 175, So.) & #19 Amari Spievey (6'0" 190, Jr.). Spievey is a legit NFL prospect & collegiate shut down corner. What impresses me is his physical play in run support. It's hard to tell what kind of player Prater is because he always had safety help over the top as they were willing to put Spievey out on an island. Iowa has not matched up its corners this season - Spievey plays wide & Prater plays the boundary. It will be interesting to see if they do so Spievey can cover BeBe. If they don't, BeBe on Prater is a mismatch.
  • Safeties: #9 Tyler Sash (6'1" 210, So.) & #30 Brett Greenwood (6'0" 200, Jr.). You'll see a LOT of Tyler Sash in the Orange Bowl. In my opinion Iowa's best player. Very dynamic. Not a huge hitter but a great tackler. Parker won't hesitate to move him all over the field. I expect Sash to be flying to the pitchman on the triple option. His ability to contain Nesbitt will be key to this game. Greenwood is a good complementary player who rarely makes mistakes, i.e. an Iowa defender.
What stuck out at me when watching Iowa play is how similar they are to UNC. The defenses are almost a clone of each other. Both have all conference players at the same positions: defensive end (Clayborn & UNC's Robert Quinn), a play-making linebacker (Angerer/Quan Sturdivant), a great safety (sash/Deunta Williams), & a shut down corner (Spievey/Kendic Burney). If anything UNC has more talent at defensive tackle (Thomas/Austin) that Iowa. But for a frame of reference, think UNC's defense & you'll have an idea of what we're up against.....

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Coming Later Today....

Actual football content as we take a look at the Hawkeye defense.....

A Bit About the Hawkeyes...


For a good time call....Lois Feldman

From the November 19, 2009 edition of the St. Paul Pioneer Press:

"A couple of University of Iowa fans took a break from Saturday's game at the Metrodome against the University of Minnesota to have some illicit sex in a Dome restroom, police said.

The duo — a 38-year-old woman and a 26-year-old man from Carroll and Linden, Iowa, respectively — turned a handicapped toilet stall into their love nest about 8:30 p.m., late in the Hawkeyes' 55-0 trouncing of the Gophers.

A crowd of intoxicated fans gathered in the restroom to laugh and cheer the off-the-field action, until an Avalon Security guard tipped off University of Minnesota police to the ruckus.

Officers had to interrupt the intimate moment to cite the couple for indecent conduct, a misdemeanor.

University of Minnesota Police Chief Greg Hestness said similar citations at the Metrodome or on campus usually involve public urination.

He said it was the first time in his six years at the U that his force has interrupted a sex act during a Gophers game.

Hestness assumed the woman was embarrassed about being caught: She initially gave a false name to officers and had to be identified by her husband before she was released.

The man was attending the game with his girlfriend, according to police.

"It's a long ride back to Iowa," Hestness said."

Oh, shocking, it's ruined her life!!!. Nothing like a little home town publicity after getting caught banging a random stranger in a stadium bathroom. We have just one problem with all this: have you no respect! THE HANDICAPPED STALL????? Where's your sensitivity you brutish, uncaring louts? Poor guy in a wheelchair waiting while you gratify yourselves. If you learn nothing from this, please, not the handicapped stall. Our disabled friends have enough to deal with as it is...


A Lebowski Moment....


Walter Sobchak: You want a toe? I can get you a toe, believe me. There are ways, Dude. You don't want to know about it, believe me.

The Dude: Yeah, but Walter....

Walter Sobchak: Hell, I can get you a toe by 3 o'clock this afternoon...with nail polish. These fucking amateurs.

Mystery solved....You're a dastardly man, Walter Sobchak....

Don't Piss Us Off....


....Or we'll lock you in a closet. You may then have your former football player Dad use his position in the media to shed light on the fact you were locked in a dungeon, or closet, or equipment room, IN THE DARK, as the case appears to be. Oh shit, the dreaded dark! What the fuck is going on in Lubbock? Mike Leach is a crazy bastard. That's not always a bad thing. He's often crazy like a fox, or a high seas pirate, as he would like to believe. So either Leach done lost his head & nutted up, locking an injured player in an equipment storage closet in the dark in lieu of practice while said player had a concussion, or, Adam James is a young man with a sense of entitlement whose pride was wounded & whose Dad acts like a little league father when his son doesn't get the playing time he felt he deserved. Either way, the storm's arisin' for the Lubbock Pirate & things are getting dicey. For the record some of James' former crew-mates on the S.S. Red Raider are staying loyal to their Captain. We can't make this shit up, we swear....

Monday, December 28, 2009

The Compulsive Gambler's Guide to the Galaxy....pt.6


Back to work for the Jackets today as they continue prep for the Orange Bowl. We hope to have some news from practice todayand we fully expect more spirited sessions than last year - no one wants a repeat of New Year's Eve. We continue onward in our effort to pick every bowl game this season. We're all the way to January 2nd & through the use of Hash's Inverse Transitive Theorem of Gambling have compiled an astonishing 5-5 record to this point. Dead ass mediocre. Fine work. On to the games:
  • International Bowl - South Florida (-6.5) vs. Northern Illinois. We'd like to suggest a name change to our friends in Toronto: how about the "Who The Fuck Cares Bowl". South Florida & Northern Illinois playing in Canada? Give us a break. Surprisingly, we've actually watched both these teams play this year. Shame on us. Northern Illinois has two good tailbacks & can run the ball. Jim Leavitt beats his players in order to get them to perform. He also head butts them while they are wearing helmets & he is not....might we suggest some different motivational tactics, Coach? Take the Bulls.
Jim Leavitt after head butting a player...Dale Carnegie he's not...
  • Cotton Bowl - #19 Oklahoma State vs. Mississippi (-2.5). Can we please change Oklahoma State's name to the "T. Boone Pickens" or how about just the "Boones"? Most billionaires buy pro football teams (see Jones, Jerry or Blank, Arthur). Not that rascally maverick T. Boone; he buys himself a college football team. Ole Miss has "Coach Giggity" himself, Houston Nutt, who every year seems to excite his fan base then fall flat once the season begins. Dez Bryant can't play because he hung out with Deion Sanders. The Ole Miss band can't play "From Dixie with Love" because chanting "the South will rise again" while professing to love your predominantly black football team is the height of hypocrisy & racism. This would be a better bar fight than football game but we'll take Ole Miss based simply on pulchritude factor...
Nowhere on our planet can you find hotter women than at The Grove before an Ole Miss game....
  • Papajohn's Bowl - South Carolina (-4.5) vs. Connecticut. This should actually be an entertaining game. We can't remember a team that's had a tougher season than the Huskies. We can't remember the aura of invincibility that once surrounded the Ol' Ball Coach. Carolina's Eric Norwood is a great player. And WR Alshon Jeffery will be a great player. Connecticut is nice but this isn't a tour of homes. Take the Cocks to the bank...
The Ol' Ball Coach keeps his eyes on the prize....
  • Liberty Bowl - Arkansas (-7.5) vs. East Carolina. Darth Vader vs. Skip Holtz is just such a mismatch. Throw in a rifle-armed Ryan Mallet on the side of the Empire & you have the makings of a route. If you want to see a future NFL star QB while still in college check out Mallet - he's got all the tools. Pirates can be formidable but Arkansas plays the role of Navy SEALS in this picture....Pig Soooey....
The Bobby Petrino Story: I really am a dick with teeth...seriously...
  • Alamo Bowl - Michigan State vs. Texas Tech (-7.5). Speak of pirates & up pops Mike Leach. The Swashbuckler from Lubbock is a favorite at The Barrel. Who else publicly blasts his player's "fat little girlfriends" & gets away with it? And then there's the gangsta crew from MSU. Just rumbling around campus kicking the shit out of the hockey team & other unsuspecting dormitory residents. Way to be involved in campus life outside of football, fellas. So it's gansters vs. pirates in a Texas cage match.....We'll take Leach & his men....
Mike Leach & Achmed the Dead Terrorist talk shop....

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Compulsive Gambler's Guide to the Galaxy....pt.5


Well our smorgasbord of bowl games has finally reached a crescendo as we've reached New Year's Day.....Wait, there are only five games on New Year's Day? There are just as many on January 2nd? This new bowl structure sure does suck....Please remember to abide by Hash's Inverse-Transitive Theorem of Wagering at all times for greater success. And they're off....
  • Outback Bowl - Northwestern vs. Auburn (-7.5). Our fondness for the Northwestern Literary Wildcats is well documented. With a coach named Fitgerald (see F. Scott) & a QB named Kafka this team has some karmic mojo working. Auburn is the prettiest little village on the plains. That sounds so gay. Robespierre, please explain this stupidity. Auburn also has offensive mastermind/evil genius Gus Malzhan calling plays. Trivia question: who sucks more: Chris Todd or "Catfish" Crompton? That's a "chicken or the egg" conundrum right there. We like Onterio McCalebb. Take Auburn, lay the points....
"SEC Speed" is just a notch below "Ludicrous Speed"
  • Capital One Bowl - #13 Penn State (-2.5) vs. #12 LSU. We think of our buddy Romeo when we think of Penn State. Quite, calm, measured, thoughtful. A "renaissance" man if you will (if that renaissance involves the Simpsons or show tunes). He also has the ability to grow the greatest beard ever. We then think of Romeo deep in Cajun hunting camp, eating boudin while trying to avoid being set on fire by a drunken fellow in overalls named St. Pierre. We're almost sure Romeo has never owned a firearm in his life. In Cajun country even the women own firearms. This makes us smile. LSU has T-Bob Hebert, so they got that going for them. We have no idea how any of this relates back to football. So we're going to go with the ever popular "whose strangest food tastes better" pick. A battle between scrapple & boudin. Boudin wins in a landslide.....take the Cajun Roughriders & the points....
The Cookin' Cajun Justin Wilson says "WHOOWEE, take the points......"
  • Gator Bowl - West Virginia (-2.5) vs. F$U. Coach Daggummit's last hurrah will be a redneck showdown of epic proportions. The mountain boys, a.k.a. couch burners take on the Redneck Riviera's finest in the 'Noles. Waffle Houses & Denny's throughout the region are rejoicing at their windfall. If there's any coach more senile than Bobby it's West "BY GAWD" Virginia's Bill Stewart. The man only let jitterbug Noel Devine touch the ball an average of 17 times a game this year. That's some stupid shit. The Panhandlers have some thing to prove & win one for the Old Man....
"See one time back when a few year's ago, daggummit...."
  • The Rose Bowl - #8 Ohio State vs. #7 Oregon (-3.5). Offensive genius Jim Tressel brings his usual talent laden squad to Pasadena....What's that you say? Tressel's not an offensive genius? I beg to differ. It takes genius to be that impotent & ineffective with that much talent around you. Not everyone can be that offensively challenged. Chip Kelly on the other hand has a whirling dervish of a spread offense led by fire hydrant Jeremiah Masoli. This bodes well for the Ducks. Two reasons the Ducks win: 1) they'll come out in some hideous uniform combination which will distract & annoy the ultra-conservative Tressel the entire game, & 2) they have LeGarrette Blount on the sideline & he'll knock you the fuck out at the slightest provocation....
It's great to know you're the baddest MF'er in any room at any time...
And have video to prove it...
  • Sugar Bowl - #3 Cinncinnati vs. #5 Florida (-10.5). Let's see; one school plays in the Big Least and just lost it's coach & interim head coach to other programs. One school is losing perhaps the greatest player in college football history to graduation & its coach to health issues. Interesting match-up. Until you factor in the vast talent differential & the Florida defense. Take the Gators & lay the points...
We simply love Mr. Spikes taste in clothing...it take a real man to wear a pink suit...we also applaud your sense of decorum in leaving the top hat & cane at the house. Not appropriate for a business trip to a bowl game...

Be On The Lookout For.....


Urban Meyer. On the Flats. Watching his daughter play volleyball for the Jackets. Don't freak out, CPJ is not going anywhere. That's one way to sell tickets to the Sugar Bowl.....

Saturday, December 26, 2009

We're Back....

Well, Christmas is over. Hopefully the family drama was minimal & the presents were many. There's not a whole lot going on at Tech right now as players & coaches return on Monday to begin Orange Bowl preparation. Rumor has it things will be a bit different this year leading up to the game. Hopefully this is the case as last year still leaves a bad taste in our mouth...
So as we wait for another Gambler's Guide we thought we'd leave you with a few videos:

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Compulsive Gambler's Guide to the Galaxy....pt.4


Back at it tonight as Mormons invade Las Vegas to fight against Oregon State. That 's Mormons against Beavers. But we already knew that to be the case. Mormons are against anything fun....that's why they condone polygamy. Onward with our picks. We've reached Thursday, December 31st, for those keeping track.
  • Armed Forces Bowl - Houston (-4.5) vs. Air Force. Should actually be an interesting game to watch with Houston throwing the ball all over & Air Force running the Veer. Did you know that Colorado Springs, home of the Air Force Academy, is also the self-proclaimed home of Christian Evangelism in America? Take that for what it's worth. Case Keenum puts up another statistical smorgasbord and the Cougars win....
Let's watch & see if Keenum is a system guy or really that talented...
  • The Sun Bowl - Oklahoma (-9.5) vs. #21 Stanford. Did you know that the Sun Bowl replaces the Gator Bowl as the #2 ACC bowl next year? If that's not motivation to win the ACC I don't know what is. "El Paso in January: what dreams are made of....". Stanford has International Harvester clone Toby Gerhardt playing tailback. They don't have starting QB Andrew Luck. Oklahoma has DT Gerald McCoy but no Sam Bradford. In a battle of back-up QB's always use the moustache as the deciding factor....
Oklahoma QB Landry Jones' moustache gives the edge to the Sooners (but that is a lot of points)
  • Texas Bowl - Missouri (-8.5) vs. Navy. Tread wearily here, gambling public. Our affinity for Navy football is well documented here. We love the Triple Option. What goes unnoticed about Navy this year is their great defense. We're not sure they'll win but we'll take Bill the Goat & the points....
Ricky Dobbs set a new season mark with 24 rushing TD's.....
  • Insight Bowl - Minnesota (-2.5) vs. Iowa State. Exhibit #1 why there are too many bowls. Two crappy teams playing in a crappy bowl. We're guessing this will be like watching old people have sex- awkward, painful, & not the least bit titillating. Thankfully the game is on the NFL Network, which no one gets. Ironic that with Gophers wideout Eric Decker sidelined by an injury it's highly probable not a single future NFL player will be on the field....
OHHHH SNAP!!!
That shit is burned in your brain & now you hate us & the Insight Bowl....
  • Chik-fil-a Bowl - #11 Viginia Polly (-4.5) vs. Tennessee. The Whiner vs. The Brat. Are laser-guided munitions an option here? Let's call this the Appalachia InBred Bowl. We'll take VPISU & support the ACC but if something bad happens at the Dome it's Romeo that's the structural engineer...
Just what we need....
Importing more rednecks into Atlanta for the VPISU-Tennessee game....

Give it if you got it....

From Tech blog On The Rumble Seat today:

The Ramblin' Reck needs your financial support -- The Road to Miami Begins!

Help let the Ramblin' Reck rideout to Miami

Help let the Ramblin' Reck rideout to Miami

Dear Ramblin' Reck fans, friends, and family members,

After almost a month of waiting, I finally heard good news yesterday regarding the Orange Bowl. The Ramblin' Reck will be leading the team onto the field on January 5th! You can have the opportunity to be a part of making history happen! When the Reck first arrived on campus in 1961, it mainly traveled long distances by freight train. This was because there were strong relationships between the train companies and the administration and the Ramblin' Reck Club at the time. As times change, so do transportation modes. Today, the Reck travels by covered trailer and it is pulled by rental truck. The successful 2009 football season has proven to be costly for the finances of the Ramblin' Reck. As many of you know already, the Ramblin' Reck makes its money solely from appearances. It receives no money from the Athletic or Alumni Associations and is maintained on behalf of the student body solely by the Ramblin' Reck Club who is also responsible for making sure the Reck gets to where it needs to be. The Reck needed to be in Tampa for our first outright ACC Championship since 1990, and the Reck must be in Miami for our first Orange Bowl appearance since 1967 and our first BCS bowl game ever. We need your financial support to help get it there.

Transporting the Ramblin' Reck is costly. Currently, the Driver must find a rental truck big enough to tow the Reck in its trailer. The Class of 1984 generously donated the funds to purchase a truck that can tow the trailered Reck properly, but it is not scheduled to arrive on campus until later this spring. The cost to rent a truck for the Orange Bowl is $1,000 plus gas, an amount that will take a significant chunk out of the Reck's finances. We are asking you to help get the Ramblin' Reck, our mascot, to Miami and to the Orange Bowl. It has been years since the car has made trips of great distance to fulfill its duty of leading the team onto the field, and the account has not been properly prepared for such a venture.

We are asking for your donations, every little bit will help alleviate the burden of transporting the Ramblin' Reck. You may wonder what you will get for your donation. For every $25 you give to the Ramblin' Reck, you will have your name entered in a drawing to have a day with the Ramblin' Reck. Your prize will include a private tour for two around campus and a provided picnic on one of Georgia Tech's lawns . I have discussed this with the 2010 Rambln' Reck Driver, and he assures me that he will work closely with the winner to make this a memorable afternoon on campus!

The deadline for the drawing is December 31. If you're sending a check, it must be postmarked by that date. (although, we'll accept your donations of any amount before or after that date!)

There are two ways you can give money to help get the Ramblin' Reck to Miami. The first is through PayPal. Simply send a transfer to RamblinWreckDriver@gmail.com (or click here) and your money will go directly to the account created by the Ramblin' Reck Club for the Ramblin' Reck. The second method is through check. Please make checks payable to: Ramblin' Reck Club and send to: Ramblin' Reck Driver, 329912 Georgia Tech Station, Atlanta, GA 30332. Your checks will go directly to the 2010 Ramblin' Reck Driver where they will be deposited directly into the account for the Ramblin' Reck.

Many of you who read this site know me professionally and personally. The Ramblin' Reck is a piece of Georgia Tech history which I have given my all to protect and secure this full year of 2009. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to e-mail directly. My full name is Winfield Tufts. I am a 5th year ISyE major who will graduate from Georgia Tech in May. You shouldn't have any trouble finding out who I am now.

Please forward this information on to alumni, message boards and all Georgia Tech Fans!

Sincerely,

Winfield Tufts, 2009 Ramblin' Reck Driver

Wreck_medium

Going to the Orange Bowl without the Wreck is like going to church without your pants on. This can't happen...& we're sure it won't. We'll do our part but we think it's time for someone at the GTAA to put pen to paper & get these guys a check.....

Good News for ACC Fans

Via Dr. Saturday, Joe McKnight may join the list of USC players ineligible for the Ego-maniacal Normans Bowl against Boston College. It seems Mr. McKnight was left behind in Los Angeles to finish up some paper work related to a brand new SUV he's been driving around town.

In defending why his name was on the car's registration, Local business man Scott Schenter (In LA that could mean so many things, but it probably involves excommunicated Mormon girls) truly stretches the concept of plausible deniablity to its head exploding limits.

Schenter's points

1)
Thanks a bunch, now I have to tell my wife about all those cars I bought for all those women. Jerks.

2)
I'm rich and powerful, I can afford to fly to South Africa and conduct huge business deals, deals I need to market, but I'll be damned if I'll take the time and thirty cents a minute to check my e-mail. If you want to contact me, send a telegram like a responsible news organization. I also don't give a damn if anything I say is true. You're to dumb to go through your Outlook sent box to reconstruct the time line.
4)
Do you have unwanted nuclear waste? If so read on.

5)
And screw you for what you did to Washington!

6)
I have an ankle tattoo because a girl made me do it. You butch bunch of rough trade!

7)
Smart Bullets Inc. has a patent to turn nuclear wastes into valuable metals, eliminating nuclear wastes and actually turning it into usable materials. Act now!

8)
Do you know who my Father is!

9)
I own lots of things. Things like 4joemcknight.com. I thought it was funny, but I forgot I owned it because I own so many things.
10)
Please stop reporting on my personal life, particularly in areas that may
a) cause problems with my wife, or
b) involve possible NCAA violations, but
c) feel free to publish all you'd like on the amazing waste disposal systems provided by Smart Bullet, Inc.
11)
Follow this one closely
a) I bought the car for...
b) Johanna Michell Beltran...
c) A family friend an employee(read ex-Mormon) who is...
d) Joe McKnight's girlfriend, because...
e) her parents couldn't get a loan...
f) being the kind "uncle" I am, I secured the car loan, but...
g) My employee and single mother makes the $500 a month payment,
h) and $500 a month is a very small amount. Seriously, that's way less than her share of the rent. That must run her $550, $575 a month.

In summation, I pay my employee, so she can pay for a car, which her boy friend can then drive around town. Totally harmless.
You have a truly staggering intellect Mr. Schenter, almost unbelievable. Almost like it was fake. In any event the Barrel has one thing to say to all of this. Go Eagles! Go for the ACC!

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Compulsive Gambler's Guide to the Galaxy....pt.3


Well we're off to a decent start at 2-1. After watching Fresno State play against mighty Wyoming we're crystal clear on what the "V" on the back of their helmets stands for. And if you didn't get a chance to watch Middle Tennessee square off with Southern Miss in the New Orleans Bowl on Sunday night you missed out. A great game & even better performance by MTSU QB/One-Man Show Dwight Dasher. One word for Mr. Dasher: BALLER. I'm not as bummed about Tech playing MTSU at home next year. In fact, he'll be really fun to watch. Kid can really play. Moving forward with our picks:
  • EagleBank Bowl - UCLA (-4.5) vs. Temple. That's correct. Temple is playing in a bowl game. The probability of this happening is somewhere close to that of Hash teaching an aerobics class. We're pretty sure the apocolypse is nigh. So hats off & many a White Russian for Temple coach Al Golden. Without a doubt our coach-of-the-year. So we could really care less about this game, frankly. Which leads us to ever popular "who has the hottest women" poll to determine a winner....
A landslide victory for UCLA....and a compelling reason to attend college in Cali....
  • Champs Sports Bowl - #15 Miami (-2.5) vs. #25 Wisconsin. Let's see. Straight Gangstars from ThugU vs. a bunch of Midwestern dairy farmers. If this were a casserole contest the folks from Madison might have a chance. It's not. And to top it off the game is in Florida. Illicet substances don't even have to cross state lines in this case. Jacory Harris will have at least 5 white farm girls mesmerized by his swagger...in the first quarter. I'd say bet the farm but let's go with bet the drug cartel mansion. ThugU. Big...
Some smooth cats hang in Miami.....
  • Humanitarian Bowl - Bowling Green vs. Idaho (-1.5). Please call 213-386-8789 if you're even contemplating wagering on this game outside of a football pool. There's no way you've even seen either team play. Seriously. But if you're in a pool that forces you to pick every game we suggest you opt for the "Mascot Fearsome Factor" in picking this game. Bowling Green is the Falcons. Not bad. Idaho is the Vandals. Vandals are either an East Germanic tribe who sacked Rome in 455 A.D. or a motorcycle gang. Either way their gonna rape & pillage some shit. Take Idaho....
Hard to think "The Sacking of Boise in 2010" makes Wikipedia...
  • Holiday Bowl - #20 Arizona (-.5) vs. #22 Nebraska. The ever popular half point. It's like having your manly "onions" grazed; you just wait that extra half second for the pain to set in. Will it hurt? Did it miss? OHHHHH, shit. That's a half-point line. This is simple. Nebraska couldn't score with a $100 bill in a whorehouse. Their offense is that bad. However, one doesn't need an offense when one has Ndamukong Suh. The "House of Spears" HIMSELF would only be about a 4 point dog to Arizona. We'll take the Beast & the half point. Happily. And we'll watch to see the destruction Suh wreaks upon all....
Like we said, you don't need an offense when he can score by himself.....


Random Thoughts & Monday Musings...


Bowl Practice continues on the Flats with not a lot of news to report. A couple brief notes to catch you up on what's happening as best as we can figure:
  • According to the GTAA every Tech player that appeared in a game this season is eligible for the Orange Bowl. Fine work on the grades, gentlemen. Wording is a bit curious to me but we'll leave well enough alone.
  • Ben Anderson had successful reconstructive knee surgery & is beginning rehab. It will be a stretch for him to be ready for the opener next year but we're holding out hope...
  • Verbal commits DT Shawn Green & linebacker Quayshawn Nealy took their official visits to Tech this weekend. According to reports both players had an excellent time. Always good to hear & particularly important in Green's case as we're gonna need him to play next year.
  • We were very disappointed in Tech's home schedule next season. Both South Carolina State & Middle Tennessee? Amend that after watching MTSU in the New Orleans Bowl last night. MTSU QB & Folkston native Dwight Dasher is one hell of a player. Straight BALLER. Next year's tilt just got a whole lot more interesting. And yes, we we taped the game for next year's scouting. You're welcome.
We'll throw you more as we hear it but in the interim we're all about making this lovely lady Queen Bee...


Play Calling

There are times when events drive this website, such as during the season. Sometimes it's all we can do to run reviews and previews of each game. At other times the website drives content. It doesn't matter if nothing is happening, we have to find a way to turn that into a blog post. A good maxim to remember while reading any media outlet is that the most important story of the day isn't necessarily important.

With that said, the last series of the UGA game has been bugging us. Its not a big deal. The sting of that loss was quickly eased by the Orange Bowl Balm applied a week later. Besides, Paul Johnson knows more about football than we do buildings and hash browns. Yet four pass plays in row just seemed like an odd series, but how odd was it? How far outside of Tech's comfort zone was that series? A little outside a team's comfort zone could be justified as a change of pace to keep the defense off balance, but going way outside a team's comfort zone could be a mistake. Sure it may be a surprise, but your players may have difficulty executing the sequence do unfamiliarity with the plays.

To answer that question we wanted to come up with a system for charting offensive series in terms of how run heavy or pass heavy they are. We figure if you can come up with a number, or better yet a chart, then you can make a reasonable judgment on whether a series was in a team's comfort zone or not. If it was not, then perhaps something went wrong. Perhaps a penalty or time left on the clock caused a coach to stray from his typical strategy? If the difference persists over an entire game, perhaps the defense is effectively limiting the offenses options.

We began by breaking down every drive Georgia Tech ran this year into first down segments. How many plays, not including penalties, did it take to get a first down or end the drive? We then categorized the segments according to run/pass mix. We arranged the plays into groups from the most run heavy, four runs in a row (RRRR), to the most pass heavy, four passes in a row(PPPP), and assigned each group a numerical value.

We came up with a total of 30 sequences of four plays or less that could result in a first down or touchdown. Run heavy play sequences were numbered -15 to -1 and pass heavy pass sequences were numbered 1 to 15. The closer to -15 or 15 the more unbalanced the play sequence. The closer to 0 the more balanced the play sequence. We then calculated the team's average.

As a way of testing the system we compared Tech's game against Jacksonville State to Texas Tech's game against the North Dakota Fighting Sioux played that same weekend. Tech's average sequence came in -6.53, very run heavy. Texas Tech averaged a 6.10, almost completely opposite of Georgia Tech. So the system seems to work alright.

Below is how Tech rated on the season

RUN/PASS AVERAGE PER GAME = -8.11

PERCENTAGE OF SEQUENCES THAT RESULTED IN A FIRST DOWN OR TOUCHDOWN = 80.33%

Break Down
Value-Sequence-Total-Successful
-15 RRRR-14-10
-14 RRR-92-74
-13 RRRP-3-2
-12 RR-77-71
-11 RRPR-1-1
-10 RRP-33-16
-9 RRPP-2-1
-8 R-51-49
-7 RPRR-1-0
-6 RPR-9-4
-5 RPRP-0-0
-4 RP-12-12
-3 RPPR-0-0
-2 RPP-5-1
-1 RPPP-1-0
1 PRRR-4-4
2 PRR-4-4
3 PRRP-0-0
4 PR-7-7
5 PRPR-1-1
6 PRP-9-5
7 PRPP-0-0
8 P-23-21
9 PPRR-0-0
10 PPR-2-1
11 PPRP-2-1
12 PP-4-4
13 PPPR-0-0
14 PPP-3-1
15 PPPP-1-0

So on the season Georgia Tech only passed the ball on first and second down twelve of 347 sequences. Of those twelve times they were successful seven times. That's a good rate, but 22 points below their overall average. Further more, Tech only passed the ball on first, second, and third down four times, and was successful only once. Finally Tech only passed the ball on first, second, third, and fourth down once. We all know how that turned out.

We're not trying to make a big deal about this. Couch Johnson made a mistake all coaches have made. He missed on a big play he knew was there and kept going back to it. Each time digging himself deeper into a hole. For a brief second he lost track of what his team did well. It was a little mistake at a bad time.

Anyway, food for thought we hope.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

TCU is Kevin Bacon

Go head and test us. We guarantee we can tie TCU to any FBS school through conference games.

The Compulsive Gambler's Guide to the Galaxy....pt.2


Back at it again with more wagering advice for all you degenerates out there. I'm feeling good about my picks so please remember Hash's Inverse-Transitive Theorem of Gambling still applies. We've advanced to post-Christmas games. Here we go:
  • Little Caesars Bowl- Marshall vs. Ohio University (-1.5). A Thundering Herd vs. a Bobcat. Seems a bit of a mismatch. Be not hasty, ye' unbelievers! Ohio is coached by former Nebraska head man Frank Solich. Marshall, up until yesterday, had no coach as they fired their head honcho. So you're going to a bowl game in a year in which you fired your coach. Either 1) your standard of success is ridiculous (see Florida Sugar Bowl ticket sales), or 2) there are way too many bowl games. The latter for $200, Alex. Marshal did hire West Virginia John "Doc" Holliday as their new head man. The cache he would have for lobbing Tombstone quotes at opponents during press conferences makes me giddy. "Why Frank Solich, you look like someone walked across your grave". Spectacular. We're going to base our pick on the fact that Romeo's wife is an Ohio U. alum & we think she kicks ass. So take the Bobcats. "You're a daisy if you do..." But all bets are off once Doc comes on board at Marshall...
An inspired hire by Marshall..."I'm your huckleberry...."
  • Meineke Car Care Bowl - #17 Pittsburgh (-2.5) vs. UNC. One of the more competitive games on the slate this bowl season. Might want to play this as part of a six team, super-teaser parlay. Add the wire wheel kit to the back to be the flyest guy in town. Pitt freshman RB Deion Lewis is a special player. UNC has a great defense. Pitt has the Wannstache. It's basically a home game for the Heels. We'd stay away from this with real money but since we're playing with house cash take UNC & the points.
The Wannstache is a powerful force to be reckoned with....
  • Emerald Bowl - Boston College vs. #24 USC (-8.5). How the mighty have fallen. USC has descended to the plain of us mere mortals & is playing in a meaningless bowl. Boston College's offense is inept along the lines of the Bush White House or Frank's spelling prowess. Our "Stone Cold, Bet the Farm, Lock of the Bowl Season". We'd give 14 if necessary. USC in an ass whoopin'....
The Song Girls....Has any group done more for the fuzzy sweater.....?
  • Music City Bowl - Kentucky vs. Clemson (-6.5). A battle of academic titans.....Sorry, wrong game. An offensive coordinator named Joker vs. a creature named Dabo. Something has to give. Somewhat compelling in that whole ACC vs. SEC "we're neighbors that want to out-do each other" sort of way. Giant Blow-up Santas & inflatible Snow Globes in both teams futures? Clemson has C.J. Spiller. Kentucky has.....? Tigers in Nashville....
We'll ride this guy & give the points....
  • Independence Bowl - Texas A&M vs. Georgie (-6.5). Beautiful downtown Shreveport. Is there anywhere you'd rather be? Texas A&M is a great opportunity for a good, young coach. Mike Sherman is neither. Georgie employed the time honored "addition-through-subtraction" plan in firing Slick Willie, Fabris, & Jancek. We're sad to see you go. Pains me to say but take the Flea Bags....
We're rooting for this to hit Shreveport, LA. on December 28th, 2009

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Compulsive Gambler's Guide to the Galaxy....pt.1


Or the Bowl season. Tomorrow "Bowl Season" officially kicks off & as other news around Tech & college football is particularly slow I thought I would give you my picks for EVERY bowl game this year (except for one- you'll get that next week). There are by my count 33 games so you'll get this in installments. Please note that these picks are solely for gambling purposes & have nothing to do with entertainment. Please also apply the Hash Slinger Inverse-Transitive-Theorem-of-Wagering to all picks. For those of you who are unfamiliar, the Theorem is quite simple: always bet against the team Hash picks. Unless of course you somehow have figured out how to write off gambling losses on your taxes & are looking for just such deductions. If that is the case, by all means go with my picks. We think people who pick without using the line are weak-ass pansies. So here are the games:
  • New Mexico Bowl- Fresno State (-10.5) vs. Wyoming. Fresno State head coach & Belichek disciple Pat Hill had this to say after signing a contract extension last week: "winning is everything. That's what it's all about. Everything is about winning, whether your scrimmaging or you're playing tiddlywinks, or whatever it is. The American way is about winning....If you don't like winning go to another country where everybody does the same thing." Deep down in his mind Pat Hill thinks Wyoming is another country. And he may be right. Take Fresno, give the 10.5.....
With a 'stache like that, whose gonna' argue...?
  • Beef O'Brady's Bowl - Rutgers (-2.5) vs. Central Florida. The State University of New Jersey against an angry resume-forging Irishman. Hmmmm, might be worth watching. Have you seen Jersey Shore on MTV yet? Holy Shit! Anthropologists will have a field day now & in years to come.....But since every guy on that show is juiced to the nines we'll use our deductive powers & guess steroids are easy to buy in N.J. And steroids help you play football. Take the Scarlett Knights....
Take these guys & lay the points.....Is the mascot a douchebag?
  • New Orleans Bowl - Southern Miss (-3.5) vs. Middle Tennessee State. Upland vs. lowland in a battle of redneck supremacy. Pre-game festivities include bear & gator wrasslin', the famous "shoot & cook" squirrel contest, & of course the now traditional high stakes porch checker playin'. This game will also double as the 2009 Southeastern Mullet Convention. We can't tell you much about the game but we like MTSU's Rick Stockstill as a coach. Go Upland & pick the boys from Tennessee....
Anybody need two...?
  • Las Vegas Bowl - #18 Oregon State (-1.5) vs. #14 BYU. Woohoo, our first match-up of ranked opponents. Mormons in Las Vegas. Really? If I'm a casino owner I go knee-cap the head of the Convention & Visitor's Bureau right after I've beaten the director of the Bowl game senseless with a tire iron. Those Mormons gonna tear Vegas up, Baby! Oregon State is Oregon State; a fundamentally solid team with a couple playmakers (the Rodgers Bros.-Jacquizz & James) & a chip on their shoulders. How does a family name one brother James & the other Jacquizz? Who feels like they got a raw deal? Take Oregon State.....
As we said before, we can & would.....
  • Pointsettia Bowl - #23 Utah vs. Cal (-3.5). Wow, Moroni in the house! Utah schools on back-to-back days. Beer sales will be through the rough in the Beehive State! It's the end of college football season & we'll miss it so but this game just doesn't move us. No Jahvid Best for Cal but Shane Vereen is a capable replacement. Take the Bears...
Shane Vereen may be Cal's tailback but for overall performance we'll go with another Vereen, Ben.....That's one smooth brother....
  • Hawaii Bowl - Nevada (-14.5) vs. SMU. So with June Jones at the helm they're not the vaunted Pony Express any more. The Airmail maybe? Get DHL or someone to sponsor it? But give Jones credit for taking the only school ever given the death penalty by the NCAA to a bowl in his second season. Nevada's "Pistol" offense is prolific running the football. In fact they were the only team to out rush Tech on the year. It's a lot of points but we're comfortable giving them....Nevada rolls...
The Pony Express of Dickerson & James was fun to watch...but Nevada runs to the bank in this one...
Six more games tomorrow....