Saturday, September 02, 2006

Week 1 Wrap - How 'bout those ILLINI?


#1. Well, it was our first win in 9 games so cut me some slack. Yes, a 42-17 victory over Eastern at Memorial Stadium in Champaign was exactly what the doctor ordered. It was our first win since September 2005. Pierre rushed for 126 yards and Timmy B. threw for 149 yards in the romp at home. We had over 500 yards of total offense. Even the "JUICE" played a little bit in this game and had some contibutions. What else can I say. We're young and rebuilding. We ended up with 345 yards rushing and 24 first downs in a game we were expected to win and win big. We did. Next weekend we travel to New Jersey to take on those nasty Knghts from Rutgers who won a big game today at UNC. Check out what Gelfond has to say in his BLEEDING ORANGE and BLLUE. That will be a tough game for us right now. On to week #2. We'll see what happens next. Everything you need to know from week #1 can be found here in CFB FINAL.

#2. Elsewhere around the BIG 10 - Ohio State and IOWA looked good today in their wins over Northern and Montana, respectively. Actually, the BUCKS gave up a ton of yardage to Wolfe and the HUSKY running game, but most of that was probably late in the game when it didn't really matter. Penn State and Michigan won their games (big deal). Neither victory was impressive. Michigan didn't loook that great at home in the BIG HOUSE against Vandy. The LIONS didn't look overly impressive at home in their win over Akron. Ho hum! But, as a conference we went 9-0 today. Yes. Best in the land - we'll see. But for week #1, the BIG-10 went undefeated. I know it's not the PAC-10 this year.

Around the country -

#3. The Ducks were very impressive today in their win over Stanford. Wow - how about Dixon and Stewart and Williams and Kent and Johnson. This team has potential for a big season, and a schedule to back it up! The DUCKS are for real in 2k6. But, they might be 1 year away from a real threat for the national title. Dixon looked very strong throwing and running the ball. Stewart was a best today (Heisman candidate?). The receivers also came through big time in a big game against the Cardinals. Very impressive win for Oregon. They're definitely a top-15 team. Bring on the Sooners! They're ready. In case you missed any of the top-25 action this weekend, here's the FOX TOP-25 Summary.

#4. What the hell happened with CAL? I mean come on - #9; are you kidding me? Tennessee is a good squad, especially at Rocky Top. But what the hell was that? I should have done more homework before I took them over the VOLS in Knoxville. Big win for Tennessee and the SEC. CAL didn't beat anybody last year with a winning record. That says a lot. Overrated - absolutely yes. They can't tackle either. Or block. Or run. Or pass. Or coach. They didn't do the PAC-10 any favors tonight. Same for WSU on the plains in Auburn. PAC-10 didn't look that great east of the Mississippi. Media will have a field day with that. Tedford is a good coach, but not a great coach. He made several bad play calls especially in the first half when the game was close. I think Dodd is right - on here in that CAL might just be the biggest fraud since RuPaul. Kudos to Ainge and the VOLS for a big-time win. I'm sure Fulmur will sleep well tonight.

#5. Speaking of overrated, Oklahoma and Notre Dame also seem to fall in that category. Both won their games tonight, but neither was very impressive. Notre Dame's 'D' showed- up tonight against a very good GT squad. Where was Brady and the rest of the offense? I'll give the defense of ND some credit - they're not bad. They are a lot better than last year, and a lot faster as well. The Sooners almost lost at home to UAB. Michigan's Chad Henne has some work to do as well. But back the IRISH. You either love them or hate 'em. It's only September and already this is the most-talked about team in the nation, with plenty of ND haters our there taking their shots: Non-domers hate IRISH.

#6. Texas and Ohio State both looked very strong today. Both played weak opponents at home. I think the BUCKS are a little stronger right now compared to TEXAS but we'll know for sure after next Saturday. It's amazing to me how the great teams just keep reloading each and every year. There is no such word as rebuilding in their vocabulary. Same for USC. Wow, 44-7 with 10 minutes to go over Arkansas. More whoop-ass by the Trojans. They're still the team to beat in the PAC-10. But, watchout for Oregon. Here's a quick weekend summary in McCartney's All-Out BLITZ!

#7. Nebraska, Florida, and Clemson all looked pretty good tonight. Same for Georgia and LSU. But it's hard to say too much more than that. They really didn't play anybody. KUDOS to Auburn for finally playing somebody outside of the SEC or ACC. The COUGS actually hung in their for most of the first three quarters. Too bad they have to play 4. WSU had several chances to pull even with the TIGERS early in the game and even in the 2nd half. But, in the end too much speed and talent won out. BYU took Arizona to the wire in a match-up that was much closer than the experts thought. The Cougars appear to be on the right track with Bronco calling the shots in Provo. This one could have gone either way. BYU RECAP.

#8. Poor Colorado - ouch, losing to Montana State at home in Boulder. Have they fallen or what? Hawkins has his work cut-out for him at CU over the next few years. This is really sad to see, in my opinion. The BIG -12 has lost its collective luster and won't get it back until the North shows up again. Right now, it's all about Texas and everybody else in that conference. What happened to Colorado? How the Buffs have fallen.

#9. This is the time of year you have to be fluid You can't win a national title in September, but you sure can lose one now. Just ask Cal. How good are Texas and USC? Same for Ohio State and Notre Dame. The first #1 and #2 matchup since 1996 should happen next Saturday in Austin as Ohio State ventures in to Darryl Royal to play those Horns from Texas. It will be strength against strength and weakness against weakness.

#10. What's scary? The USC defense. I mean sure they played Arkansas tonight and blew them out again (50 points). But, the 'D' is better this year than last. Booty call is in charge in the Trojan nation. The offense is back; no worries there.

Finally, is there any doubt about the best conference in the land? It's not the PAC-10. It's the SEC. Nobody has more speed or strength or skill. The SEC was on full display today for all to see. There's football, and then there's SEC football. Not the same thing. Just look what Auburn and Tennessee did today on the big stages. Mandel puts a wrap on what we learned this opening weekend of CFB: What we learned in week 1!.

My Top 10 (as of 09/02) -

1) Ohio State
2) USC
3) Auburn
4) Texas
5) Notre Dame
6) WV
7) Iowa
8) Florida
9) LSU
10) Oregon w/ Dixon

Heisman Frontrunners -

1) Troy Smith
2) Kenny Irons
3) Adrian Peterson
4) Brady Quinn
5) Chris Leak
6) Jonathon Stewart
7) Garrett Wolfe
8) Ted Ginn Jr.

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