Six years ago, to most Pac 10 fans, Utah and Colorado were skiing destinations–not threats to win an auto bid to the Rose Bowl. I don’t know where to begin trying to explain this week’s Pac 12 standings, but let’s try January of 2011. Auburn had just defeated Oregon, 22-19, on a last second field goal to win the BCS national title. Oregon Coach Chip Kelly said on the field after that loss, in Arizona, “We’ll be back.” Oregon would, Kelly wouldn’t. There was a lot to imagine back then about where the Pac 10 was going. The future, other than USC being on NCAA probation, seemed bright enough. What could not be fathomed was a time machine flash-forward in which, in late October of 2016, something called the Pac 12 South division would be led by Utah and Colorado. Yet, here we are, and it’s mind-boggling. First, that it ever had a snowball’s chance of happening. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here....Read More
Author: Chris Dufresne
History of the weekend, Part 1: Thursday and Friday made a blatant and egregious play to upstage Saturday with two “great” games that ended too late for any God-fearing working man. Boise State’s 28-27 win over Brigham Young on Thursday featured five turnovers for the winning team and BYU faking a punt on fourth-and-19 from its own five. Hmmm, interesting—it didn’t work. “Well, on film we thought we had it,” BYU Coach Kalani Sitake said on television on his way to the locker room at halftime. BYU has had a lot close calls this year—losing four games by a total of eight points—but this wasn’t one of them. That was insane. Anyway, moving on, to California’s 52-49 win over Oregon on Friday night. This one ended at 3 a.m. in the East and featured 203 total plays and 1,086 yards. It went two overtimes. The teams combined for 14 penalties for 279 yards yet the only turnover came on the last play, a Justin Herbert interception to clinch it for Cal in the second OT. Herbert, a promising Oregon freshman who threw six touchdowns in defeat, cried on the field with his helmet on. That’s what you do when you’re a kid. He had to be consoled by teammates and it was about as close-knit as anyone’s seen the 2-5 Ducks all season. Three hours later, morning horns started...Read More
Rankman’s Friday mailbag: Which way should South Bend turn? Mora’s sideline tantrums; another Pac star burial on Pac 12 Net?
It’s four in the morning, the end of December I’m writing you now just to see if you’re better New York is cold, but I like where I’m living There’s music on Clinton Street all through the evening I hear that you’re building your little house deep in the desert You’re living for nothing now, I hope you’re keeping some kind of record –Leonard Cohen, “Famous Blue Raincoat” Assuming that Brian Kelly is dead man walking, who do you like next at ND? Schiano? Petersen? Kiffin? Mullen? Brian Clark @TripDad06 I like your spunk, Brian, but none of those choices. I don’t think any of them work on a billboard. “Greg Schiano: He went 68-67 at Rutgers!” The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here....Read More
Don’t you love gambling? Rankman missed the “over” on USC at Arizona last week because, not one, but BOTH teams failed to score in the final minutes on first-and-goal. It almost makes me want to name a city after myself and then enter Gamblers’ Eponymous. Time to buck up, though, lot of season to go. This week’s games: California at Oregon (Friday night), Utah at UCLA, Mississippi State at Kentucky, plus a bonus over-under. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here....Read More
Rankman ended months of wild speculation Monday by deciding not to expand his ranking system. “We’ve never been more united to stay at 16,” he said after emerging from a TMG College Sports presidents’ meeting. Last summer, the idea of expansion was broached after thinking the current ranking may be “psychologically disadvantaged” against “power” systems that rank more schools. TMG paid a consulting firm $10 to gauge the feasibility for expansion and to solicit formal presentations from numbers 17 through 25. In reality, only four numbers were ever seriously considered: 17, 18, 19 and 20. Rankman refuted the suggestion other digits were only considered to appease bingo players and third-grade math teachers. “We really enjoyed the presentations of ALL the numbers,” Rankman insisted. “We learned a lot. No.21, for example, boasted it was once worn by Roberto Clemente, which it argued would help our “pirate” demographic. An interesting case was also made for 23, the only “prime” number among those considered from 21 to 25. We even got a long shot, “Hail Mary” heave from No. 26, the TMG-expansion equivalent to Rice University. Reps highlighted the number’s important role in history and culture, including the catchy song lyric, “26 miles across the sea, Santa Catalina’s the island for me…” Ultimately, Rankman and TMG decided to stay at 16, and sincerely hope this “exploratory,” fact-finding mission was not a colossal...Read More
TMG SUBSCRIPTION INFO
Join us for our inaugural season and get "more than the score!" We're offering subscribers access to our exclusive college football content for only $19.95 a year!