NCAA Week 2 And Another Thing
foshman | 08 Sep, 2017
1: This year has a slew of top quarterback prospects across the nation. With only a few exceptions these quarterback all struggled in week 1. Josh Allen struggled more than most against Iowa. While that isn’t entirely unexpected, Allen had a great opportunity to raise the level of his teammates play and was unsuccessful. Sam Darnold looked like less than a Heisman contender much less favorite and Jarrett Stidham looked like a guy that hasn’t played organized football in a long time. Even Lamar Jackson and Josh Rosen struggled early, despite having huge days and leading their teams to big wins. Of the “name quarterbacks” Mason Rudolph, Baker Mayfield, and Luke Falk didn’t struggle.
2: The SEC built its recent run of dominance on the defensive line. While other programs had similar talent at offensive skill positions and in the defensive back 7, it was the SEC that focused on deep defensive lines that were capable of dominating games. The result was that SEC offensive lines had been battle tested by the time Bowl season came and no team from another conference could withstand the best SEC defensive lines. If week 1 is to be believed the SEC West has 4 of the best defensive lines in the country and each is backed up by linebackers and secondaries with plenty of NFL caliber talent. After a single week this looks like another year where the winner of the SEC West will walk unchallenged to the National Championship.
3: Rebuilding In The Big 12 Baylor and Texas both faced upsets in the first games of their new regimes. Both coaching staffs should eventually be successful at their new destinations but neither was able to start out with a win. The attrition at Baylor is well documented, and truthfully, the University might never allow their athletic department to recruit that many character risks in the future, but Texas has plenty of talent throughout its team. Tom Herman should have found a way to better utilize that talent to open the season. That he didn’t suggest it could be a long year in Austin.
4: Irma Causes Cancellations There are 4 ranked teams in Florida. Each program outright canceled their home games scheduled for this week. It shouldn’t matter much because Florida and Florida State already have losses and USF and Miami are unlikely to get to the playoff discussion this year, but the NCAA - or at least the affected Conferences should probably look at contingency plans moving forward.
5: The Biggest Upset in NCAA History Just Happened When Howard beat UTEP it was a historic event. Who knows when that record will fall again, or even if it will. It’s cool that this happened to Caylin Newton in his first game at Howard. Caylin was far less respected as a recruit than his brother Cam and had to settle for a small school like Howard. Enter Mike London a month later and history was made. Newton has gotten plenty of credit, and it is deserved, but what a great story for Mike London - a guy that is respected by everyone that knows him.
And Another Thing
Kevin Sumlin probably won’t survive this year unless he wins the SEC or makes the playoffs after running the table. Neither is likely so Sumlin will be elsewhere next year. The loss to UCLA was embarrassing, having a regent go public with his anger - more embarrassing, but the most embarrassing incident by far is the idiotic note mailed to Sumlin by a racist Aggies fan. The University, rightly rallied around Sumlin after publication of the letter but will probably still fire him. Should Sumlin end up elsewhere in the SEC (Ole Miss) the powers that be are likely to regret firing him. Texas A&M still doesn’t recruit at the level of the SEC elite and Sumlin has done a good job making them seem better than they were throughout his tenure in College Station. He deserves better than scapegoating and racist trolling.