Tag Archives: Brian Kelly

College Football Week 8: Should be great

Photo courtesy of blog.seattlepi.com. Can Matt Barkley (pictured above) help USC avenge last year's tough loss to Notre Dame?

By Josh Kramer

We have entered the second half of regular season play.  It is no secret who the contenders are.  In addition, the Heisman frontrunners have moved up the totum pole at a blistering pace.  Clemson continues to roll in the ACC.  Stanford seems to be in great shape behind their star quarterback Andrew Luck.  Wisconsin continues to score at a blistering pace with Russell Wilson running the show.  And the SEC seems like it is going to come down to a date in Tuscaloosa November 5th.  Lots to look forward to.  But lets take a look at Week 8.

Here are the marquee matchups.

Auburn at LSU:  Tigers by 17

Headline:  LSU wins the battle of the Tigers as they continue to prep for the November 5th duel in Tuscaloosa. Continue reading

A third week that was a charm

Photo courtesy of cleveland.com. Joe Bauserman (pictured above) and the Ohio State offensive attack proved to be extremely one dimensional yesterday. Can they straighten this issue out in time for a rugged Big Ten conference slate?

By Josh Kramer

All is right in the College Football world.  Notre Dame finally won a game.  On a Week 3 slate full of potential, many of the games failed to live up to the hype, while others exceeded expectations.  We are starting to get an inkling of an idea of who is who in the College Football landscape this year.  And I for one am very excited.  Here are the highlights from the Week 3 games.

Test one has been passed

-America’s preseason number one is still undefeated as we get ready for Week 4.  Many had the September 17th date circled on their calendars as the one where the Sooners would falter and once again prove that Bob Stoops and Co. were overhyped.  Well, they took care of business in a hostile Tallahassee atmosphere and appear to be on their way to a possible National Title Game appearance.  I know that I should slow my horses, but OU plays most of their major Big 12 tests at home, and we all know how the Sooners play at home, considering they are currently on a 37 game win streak at Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

-Kenny Stills was a “Fabulous Freshman” last year.  Now he is none other than a “Sensational Sophomore.” Continue reading

College Football Week 3: Third time is the charm

Photo courtesy of newsok.com. Landry Jones (right) and Ryan Broyles (left) are College Football's most lethal connection. Can the Sooner stars help OU pick up a huge road victory against Florida State?

By Josh Kramer

Notre Dame certainly hopes the third time is the charm as they take on a tough Michigan State Spartans team in South Bend.  The Fighting Irish are off to their first 0 and 2 start since 2007, and tempers appear to be rising for one of College Football’s most storied programs.  What didn’t Week 2 have?

Classic endings, unforgettable individual performances, and upsets galore.  Week 2 was what College Football is all about.  Luckily, Week 3 has the promise of being even better.

Here are the marquee matchups.

LSU at Mississippi State:  Tigers by 7 Continue reading

A second week that was far better than mediocre

Photo courtesy of news.fiu.edu. One of the best players in College Football you have never heard of put on a real show on Friday night in Louisville. America, say hello to T.Y. Hilton (pictured above).

By Josh Kramer

It is safe to say that Week 2 of the College Football season was far from “mediocre.”  I was not thoroughly impressed by last Saturday’s football action.  This week took a 180 from last week and made me once again realize why College Football is so great.  From the second consecutive great Friday night game, to the lights going off at the Big House, week two was definitely a week to remember.  Amazingly, the schedule will only get better as we move forward.  Here is a look back at some of the highlights of Week 2.

Weeknight game are still wild and unpredictable Continue reading

College Football Week 2: And the beat goes on

Photo courtesy of theheismanwinners.com. Expect Penn State to suffer through a heavy dose of Crimson Tide running back Trent Richardson (pictured above) on Saturday.

By Josh Kramer

The glamour and the glitz of what was a mediocre first weekend in the College Football stratosphere is complete and we want some more.  Well there is plenty of more where that came from as we get set for the second week of College Football.

Here are the marquee matchups:

Alabama at Penn State:  Crimson Tide by 17

Headline:  Let the Trent Richardson Heisman campaign begin. Continue reading

Mediocre first Saturday

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Notre Dame Head Football Coach Brian Kelly (pictured above) got extra heated on an extremely hot first Saturday of the College Football season.

By Josh Kramer

The first Saturday of the long-awaited College Football season has come and gone.  Everyone is extremely excited to have College Football back in action.  And sure the TCU/Baylor game on Friday night was one for the ages that nobody will forget anytime soon.  But the first Saturday, you could not buy an upset outside of South Bend.

Some of the beatings were just brutal.  Even Appalachian State failed to provide any 2007 magic to the table, suffering an awful whooping at the hands of Frank Beamer’s Hokies.  Here are my main thoughts on what turned out to be a very mediocre first Saturday of what I still expect to be a highly entertaining College Football season. Continue reading

College Football Week 1: Let’s Get Ready to Rumble

Photo courtesy of the orlandosentinel.com. Georgia Head Coach Mark Richt (pictured above) looks to regain the love of Bulldog Nation with a tough Week 1 matchup against Boise State.

By Josh Kramer

Are you ready for some football?  College Football is back and ready to take over your Saturdays until New Years.  The NFL can have your Sundays.  NCAA Football fanatics are fine with that.  Saturdays are GameDay.  They are made for College Football.  And of course the occasional, Thursday, Friday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night games.  Do not even get me started on the shenanigans of non Saturday college football though.

As has become the tradition, I will provide you with my picks for the marquee matchups of each week.

Appalachian State at Virginia Tech:  Hokies by 14

Headline:  Hokies overcome past Week 1 woes via two-headed monster Thomas and Wilson. Continue reading

“Weekly Nickel”

Come Wednesday, College Basketball fans are in for a treat as they get to watch Jim Boeheim (left) and Jim Calhoun (right) lead their squads into another epic Big East battle. It should be a great one.

It is another Monday, and you all know what that means.  Lets get the week started with a look at the top events coming up in the sporting world throughout the next 7 days. Continue reading

“College Football Week 5: A Midseason Championship Week?”

Florida Freshman, Trey Burton (pictured above on the right) is bringing back memories of Gator legend, Tim Tebow (pictured above on the left). Could this stellar freshman be the difference maker against Alabama on Saturday?

Folks, major conference play is getting under way or right around the corner for most.  Now we are hitting October football.  This is where the games really heat up, even though the weather is beginning to cool down.  Injuries are taking its toll on teams, but the best teams will continue to find ways to win.

I will state this right now.  Week 5 will be live.

Texas vs Oklahoma:  The Red River Rivalry is one of the best games College Football has to offer year in and year out.  And let’s be honest, it is in essence, a midseason Big 12 Championship game (normally).  Though Nebraska has looked just as good or better than both of these formidable squads, this game will go a long way in determining who wins the mighty Big 12 in its last year as the normal Big 12.  Texas is coming off of a horrible home loss to a decent UCLA game.  This loss really shocked the country and showed Texas to have some big time holes this year.  I will admit though, Mack Brown demonstrating great sportsmanship and gave UCLA all the credit in the world, putting the blame on him and his team’s shoulders.  Got to respect that.  Oklahoma barely escaped in a game that they should have lost to Cincinnati, the best 1 and 3 team in the country.  Oklahoma has grinded out close games in 3 of their 4 victories this year.  This team is extremely talented and athletic, though they are lacking much to be desired in the discipline department.   I know the age-old rule is that actual talent can get thrown out the window when it comes to big time rivalry games, but this year, the talent will be the difference.  Oklahoma is head and shoulders better than Texas and will win this game by at least 14 points.  Oklahoma, in their only other game against a big time ranked opponent (FSU), looked like a juggernaut and ran the overmatched Seminoles off the field.  Expect more of the same on Saturday as the combination of Landry Jones and Ryan Broyles continues to shred opposing defenses.

Wisconsin vs Michigan State:  Welcome to a big time brawl in the Big Ten folks.  These two old rivals do not have the greatest of relationships.  Though it is heartwarming to hear that Coach Dantonio will still be able to play a role in the game from the booth for the mighty Spartans.  Michigan State has looked tough this year, though they could have easily been defeated by Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish.  Wisconsin, though they struggled vs Arizona State 2 weeks ago, put up a stunning 70 points last weekend.  This offense is lethal.  The defense is solid, and I think the vaunting Badger rushing attack will prove to be too much for the Spartans on this day.  Michigan State is close to breaking into the elite ranks of College Football, but Greg Jones and the defense will struggle stopping John Clay all day on the way to a tough loss.  I got the Badgers by 3 on the road in this one.

Florida at Alabama:  This is probably the best game of the entire weekend, and maybe even the entire year.  The two best coaches with the two best teams the SEC has to offer battling it out in front of a National Audience.  This game represents what College Football is all about.  Saban vs Meyer.  Talk about an amazing matchup of elite coaches.  Many feel that the Tide will “Roll” against the Gators as they did last year in this one.  And I say not so fast.  The Gators looked to be gaining back their offensive swagger last week against Kentucky and will surprise the Tide with their stellar freshman Trey Burton.  The kid reminded me of a young Tim Tebow last week, accounting for 6 TDs.  There is a reason why no team has ever repeated as BCS National Champions in the BCS era.  There are just too many good teams in College Football, especially in the SEC.  Look for the Gators to pull the unthinkable upset, shocking Nick Saban, Mark Ingram, and the Crimson Tide.  I got Florida shocking the country, with a  3 point victory.

Stanford at Oregon:  In essence, this is the makeshift Pac 10 Championship.  Two very good teams battling it out on National Television.  Sound familiar to what we have going on in both the Big 12 and the SEC?  Against a fairly difficult schedule so far, the Cardinal has looked outstanding both offensively and defensively ranking among the nation’s elite.  This team can flat-out play, and really stepped onto the National scene with an old-fashioned butt whipping of Notre Dame last week.  Oregon on the other hand, may be the only team in the country that has ranked even better than Stanford both offensively and defensively.  This team has looked nearly invincible, other than during a minor lull against ASU last week.  So conventional wisdom would say to pick the home team.  And that is what I am going to do.  These are both great teams.  But I feel the speed and athleticism of the Ducks, mixed in with the home crowd will give them the edge.  Look for the Ducks to upend the Cardinal by 3 in a great football game.  LaMichael James may find his way onto the short list for the Heisman Trophy after this one.

So there you have it folks.  Week 5 has arguably the most exciting slate of games we will get all year.  In essence, there is a makeshift Big 12 Championship game, SEC Championship Game, and Pac 10 Championship Game.  I am not sure if you can ask for more excitement.  And the amazing thing, there are other great matchups that I had to leave off of this post.

Week 5 appears to be a “Midseason Championship Week” for half of the major BCS Bowl Conferences.

Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.

-TheSportsKraze

“College Football Week 2: Monster Saturday”

The last time the Hurricanes and Buckeyes matched up was in the legendary 2002 National Championship Game. Could Miami get revenge in Columbus on Saturday?

  Though the NFL is underway, College Football is already heating up with a big time Week 2.  People are calling it “Monster Saturday.”  And it is sure to be a day that fans will remember in this young season.  Each week I am going to pick 3 to 5 of the marquee matchups, give you my predicted winner, and some brief thoughts.  

So the matchups of Week 2’s “Monster Saturday” are as follows:  

Georgia at South Carolina:  This is big time SEC matchup with two of the best coaches in the country going head to head.  My gut has been saying all week that Georgia can come in and take care of business in Gamecockville.  But my mind is saying to go with the home team.  And that is what I am going to do.  Both of these teams looked great against powder puff opponents in Week 1 (typical SEC move).  But the lack of AJ Green will hurt the Bulldogs.  Steve Spurrier is going to ride freshman phenom Marcus Lattimore to a major early season conference victory.  Look for this game to go down to the wire, but expect the Gamecocks to pull it out.  

Florida State at Oklahoma:  What a non conference matchup this is.  Talk about two teams showing balls and taking a risk playing a big time non conference foe.  You got to love it.  Christian Ponder looks outstanding and extremely poised in the pocket.  I guess that is what 3 years as a starter does for you.  Also do not sleep on Greg Reid returning punts.  Special teams always have a large effect on the outcome of big time games.  Florida State is starting to trek towards resembling the Seminoles of old.  But Oklahoma is no slouch either.  Now I know they looked pitiful in their opener.  But maybe it was a good thing to play a close football game already (not really)?  But DeMarco Murray is the most explosive player on the field when healthy.  Ryan Broyles is ready to break out and be considered with the best wide receivers in the country.  And Landry Jones, well, he will get better.  Though I feel Florida State is a very solid team that could make some noise in the ACC, I got the Sooners running away with this one at home.  Look for DeMarco Murray to make his presence felt and launch himself into the Heisman discussion (if he wasn’t already)   

Miami at Ohio State:  This is the game the whole country has been waiting for.  A rematch of the 2002 hotly debated National Championship game.  An instant classic.  Jacory Harris and the U looked like they had the swagger of the old U last weekend.  Ohio State did not look to shabby themselves.  But this is a whole new ball game.  The athleticism on both sides of the ball will be amazing in this one.  Also, this game matches up two of the most athletic quarterbacks in the country (though their styles in the past have been contrasting). Jacory has tended to stay in the pocket though, while Terrelle has always been big on using his legs to gain first downs.  Pryor appears to be transforming in front of our eyes though and is utilizing his intelligence and arm, rather than his legs now.  It has been an amazing transformation.  If this game was being played in Miami, I would give the Hurricanes a chance.  But it is no easy task to come into the Horseshoe and win a ball game.  Even Lebron James will be there, “staying true to his roots” and rooting for the Buckeyes.  I got Ohio State in a very entertaining affair.  

Michigan at Notre Dame:  Talk about history right?  These are your number 1 and 2 ranked programs all time in winning percentage.  Plus they are number 1 and 3 in all time wins.  This rivalry began in 1887 with some Wolverine dominance.  Eventually Notre Dame caught on to the game that people call football.  There have been two major hiatus in this rivalry, but this will be match up number 38.  Anyways, this game finally has some meaning for the first time since probably 2006.  Both teams looked very impressive in their first games and look to be on track towards having solid seasons.  There is one major newcomer to this rivalry though.  And that is Brian Kelly.  This coach has brought with him a whole plethora of tricks and winning knowledge.  Not to mention an excitement that South Bend has been lacking for the past few years.  Look for Notre Dame to have too much offense in this one, and win a tough game against the rival Wolverines.  South Bend will already be praising BK’s name at the end of this one.  I will state though, a victory for Rich Rodriguez in this clash would go a long way towards taking him off the hot seat in Ann Arbor. 

Penn State at Alabama:  Big Ten vs SEC.  Same old story right?  Sadly, in this case yes.  Even if Mark Ingram does not play, Alabama will prove to be too much for an overrated Penn State team.  I guess having Richardson is a plus for Coach Nick Saban.  Outside of Evan Royster and the emerging senior Brett Brackett at receiver, this Penn State team will be vastly overmatched.  Going into Bama with a Freshman quarterback?  Can you say “Roll Tide Roll?”  I do not care if Alabama has some question marks on defense, they are still mighty fast.  Sadly, I see this game being a blowout, but maybe Penn State will hang around for a while.  

So there you have “Monster Saturday.”  You got to love the Fall.  

Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.  

-TheSportsKraze