Archive for the ‘Football’ Category

New Era in Penn State’s Football Program

Posted by Administrator On January - 8 - 2012ADD COMMENTS

Read the latest perspective on Penn State’s hiring of Bill O’Brien to replace the legendary Joe Paterno at ArmchairQuarterBlog.

College Football Playoff – The Solution

Posted by Administrator On December - 26 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

Okay, here’s is the plan:

The playoffs would involve 12 teams. The champions of the six major conferences (Big East, ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, SEC and PAC-12), along with Notre Dame/Independents and the non-major conference champs, if they rank among the top 12 in the final BCS poll.

Read the full story at ArmchairQuarterBlog.

College Football Playoff? You Bet!

Posted by Administrator On December - 23 - 2011ADD COMMENTS

LSU and Alabama do NOT…repeat… DO NOT belong in the Allstate BCS National Championship Game at the Superdome live on ESPN at 8:30pm on January 9th. The mere fact that this game is even a remote possibility is a clear indictment of the BCS system and absolute proof that a playoff system must be put in place. And, I mean sooner, not later.

Read more at ArmchairQuarterBlog.

OSU Player Suspension… Fair or Not?

Posted by Administrator On December - 23 - 2010ADD COMMENTS

Did the NCAA go overboard when it suspended five Ohio State football players for five games next season for “receiving improper benefits” from the sale of team-related items?

Terrelle Pryor, DeVier Posey, Dan Herron, Mike Adams, and Solomon Thomas will all miss the first five games of the 2011 season for selling championship rings, awards, and team apparel in violation of NCAA rules regarding preferential treatment of student-athletes. A sixth OSU player, freshman Jordan Whiting, will miss the Buckeyes season opener for lesser violations. All six must make restitution via a donation to charity in the amount of any profit they made. Payments will range from $150 to $2,500 according to Ohio State’s official athletic website. For example, Pryor must pay back $2,500 for selling his 2008 Big Ten championship ring, a 2009 Fiesta Bowl award, and his 2008 Gold uniform pants. (I guess winning the Big Ten title doesn’t mean much to some folks).

Of course, this issue begs all sorts of questions. Why are all six players still eligible for the January 4th Sugar Bowl game? Why so many games for a relatively small amount of money alleged to be involved? Why the first five games of 2011 which will be mostly non-conference foes like Akron and Toledo and not the first five Big Ten games? What happens if one (or more) of the players leaves school and turns pro before next season? Why don’t these players know better?

The NCAA avoided the Sugar Bowl suspension issue by accepting Ohio State’s claim that the six players “were not aware that they were committing violations” at the time the violations were committed. This usually happens in cases where there was no “competitive advantage” gained through the violations, and when all the players have eligibility remaining beyond the bowl game (assuming they stay in school). Naturally, the suspicious folks among us figure that TV ratings, advertiser dollars, and general BCS bowl influence played a role here, too. Frankly, we’ll never get an honest answer from the NCAA on any of that. Ever.

Bowl eligibility aside, five games seems a tad steep in the shadow of the Cam Newton/Cam’s dad/Auburn/Mississippi State affair where Cam’s playing services were allegedly shopped around for $180,000 or some similar figure. But since the NCAA says neither Cam nor his father ever received any cash, and because Cam “had no knowledge” of his father’s actions, there was no penalty. OSU fans feel cheated on this front. Even though the Sugar Bowl is salvaged, OSU’s run at a repeat Big Ten crown in ’11 is in some jeopardy with key players like Herron and Pryor out of action until week six at Nebraska. One Buckeye fan blogged on the Big Ten Network site that the six should have told the NCAA that they gave the rings, etc. to their dads and had no idea they had been sold. This is the “Cam Theory” of innocence through ignorance.

The first five games of the Buckeyes’ 2011 season feature the likes of Akron, Toledo, Miami (FL), Colorado, and Michigan State. Only Akron is a total dog. But, only Miami is on the road, and it’s under new management in ‘11. OSU wins all five easily with Pryor, Herron, etc. suited up. Minus the six, they probably still go 4 and 1 with either Miami pulling the shocker or MSU beating them at the buzzer. Had the penalty been the first five Big Ten games, a different picture is painted. Home dates with Wisconsin, Michigan State and Indiana, and road dates with Nebraska and Illinois. Minus the six players, two or three losses are very possible. Still, the existing penalty will send a rusty Pryor into his first game action at Nebraska, and you know the Huskers will be waiting. Game two for them is a week later at Illinois, but a bye week will intervene before a home date with fellow Leaders Division powerhouse, Wisconsin. (Still can’t get used to those division names).

Since five of the six are Juniors, there is a real chance that they’ll never be penalized. They could turn pro and avoid the charitable payback, too. Luckily for Ohio State, the NFL is facing a labor crisis and possible lockout which would make it a tough choice for a player to come out early for the 2011 draft. There’s also a possibility of an appeal by OSU to reduce the suspension to three or four games, and that might be the more logical route here.

As for the last question, “why don’t these guys know better?” Well, the school is taking the blame here claiming that it was “not as explicit with our student-athlete education as we should have been… regarding the sale of apparel, awards, and gifts issued by the athletics department.” But, this statement certainly implies that the six did receive some “education” on this front, and the NCAA indicated in its punishment that an extra game was added to the suspension specifically because the players in question failed to come forward and “immediately disclose the violations when presented with the appropriate rules education.” In other words, Pryor and company knew that what they had done was a violation, and they had a chance to lessen the penalty, and they kept quiet.

Some will argue that the items sold belonged to the players, and they could sell their stuff just like any other college student to make a few bucks. After all, Ohio State, the Big Ten, and the NCAA are certainly cashing-in on the players’ talents. Bottom line, however – the university isn’t in the habit of giving items of intrinsic value like gold rings to average, non-athlete students to keep or sell. And, this is what makes the student-athletes different. Until the day when the NCAA permits some type of compensation, athletes must live with the fact that money, and ways to get money, will always be a point of contention between the NCAA, the schools, and the players. For now, the rules stand as written and applied – fair or not. And, the kids just have to get that through their heads, or face the consequences.

And we love college football too!

Posted by Administrator On December - 18 - 2010ADD COMMENTS

Believe it or not, there’s more to life than baseball… there’s college football too! We’ll be chiming in a lot in the next three weeks right through the national championship game.

Copyright 2009 Aberdeen Trading Company, All Rights Reserved.