Tag Archives: Matt Leinart

Food for Thought 8-28-2012

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Russell Wilson (pictured above) has shocked the world and been named the starting quarterback in Seattle.

By Josh Kramer

When Pete Carroll left USC, I lost almost all respect for the guy.  The situation he left behind was inexcusable and a definite admission of some sort of guilt.  That’s all in the past though.  Slowly but surely, my respect has returned for the coach that picked up a pair of national titles at USC and is currently running the show in Seattle.

At USC, it seemed as if everything was about the money.  Just ask Reggie Bush.  Since arriving in Seattle, it appears Carroll has had a change of heart.  On Sunday, he named a rookie third-round draft pick the starter at quarterback for Week 1 of the regular season.  As much as I try to ignore it, sports are a business.  Even collegiate ones unfortunately.  Money is what makes the world go round.  Not in Seattle’s quarterback case though.

Matt Flynn recently signed a three-year, $26 million deal, with $10 million guaranteed.  Everyone and their mother expected Flynn to be the starter.  Wilson, a supposedly undersized rookie quarterback is guaranteed just $619,400.  In simple terms, Flynn is guaranteed to make over 16 times the money that Wilson is guaranteed with their current contracts.  Yet, Wilson is the starting quarterback.

Simply based on merit, Wilson has outplayed his higher-paid counterpart, and is therefore deserving of the starting job.  Kudos to Pete Carroll on not being blinded by or influenced by dollar bills this time around.  The perception was that Flynn would be the Seahawks starter up until recently.  Carroll did not let the perception become a reality.  He evaluated the two players competing for the spot strictly on merit and performance.  Russell Wilson appears to have a very bright future ahead.  I do not envision Carroll regretting this decision to start the “undersized” rookie quarterback.  Talk about value in a third-round pick.  I guess height, money, and the perception of the public aren’t everything when it comes to quarterback play. Continue reading

College Football Preview: SEC too good for its own good

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Matt Barkley (pictured above) will have a special year in 2012 as he leads USC back to the pinnacle of college football and takes home the Heisman Trophy.

By Josh Kramer

Opening night for the 2012 edition of College Football is just a week away.  It seems like it was just yesterday that Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide were celebrating on Bourbon Street.  In actuality, it was 227 days ago when Alabama clinched the SEC’s sixth consecutive national championship.  Don’t expect that streak to reach seven though.

Here are my predictions for the season ahead.

ACC Champion: Florida State Seminoles

I along with most people around the country jumped the gun and proclaimed Florida State’s greatness last season.  Will this finally be the year that the Seminoles and their outstanding recruiting classes live up to the hype?  Jimbo Fisher along with the entire city of Tallahassee certainly hope so.  A loaded defense led by Brandon Jenkins, Bjoern Werner, and Xavier Rhodes are ready to roll.  As is their experienced senior quarterback EJ Manuel.  A September 22nd showdown with the reigning ACC Champs Clemson and a visit to Blacksburg for a Thursday night tussle (November 8th) with the always dangerous Virginia Tech Hokies are the two dates to keep in mind at this time.

Big 12 Champion:  Oklahoma Sooners

The Sooners are a definite contender to not only win the conference crown, but to take home the whole thing after a very disappointing and injury-riddled 2011. This will be a team that has a chip on its shoulder from start to finish in 2012.  Unfortunately for the Sooners, their schedule does not get serious until their final three games, which features road contests against Big 12 newcomers West Virginia and TCU, and a showdown with in-state rival Oklahoma State.  Also, keep an eye on the Red River Rivalry Game against a dangerous Texas team on October 13th.  Senior quarterback Landry Jones may face more media pressure than any other player in the country not named Matt Barkley.  I have a feeling that the very experienced senior will welcome it as he finishes his Sooner career with a bang. Continue reading

Could lightning strike twice?

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. The professional career of Matt Leinart (pictured above) has not exactly gone as planned. Now Leinart finds himself back in California and with a familiar teammate. Could Leinart finally begin to live up to some of the promise he demonstrated at USC?

By Josh Kramer

USC was the cream of the crop in college football during the early part of the 2000s.  They were the “U,” after the “U.”  This resulted in their naming as the team of the decade for the period between 1996 and 2006.  It was a renaissance of sorts in Los Angeles in regards to collegiate football.  All was good in southern California under the direction of Pete Carroll and an outstanding crop of quarterbacks.  Carson Palmer got the party started in Trojanville taking home a Heisman Trophy and an Orange Bowl victory.  Then came Matt Leinart.  Leinart proceeded to have one of the all-time great college careers capturing two National Championships and a Heisman Trophy.

After his decorated college career, Palmer went on to spend eight years in the Midwest.  There were many ups and downs for the former Trojan star, but due to injuries and many other factors, Palmer never lived up to the promise he once demonstrated as a Trojan.  Matt Leinart’s professional career has still failed to really take flight yet. It has been all downs and very few ups for the former Heisman winner.

Well yesterday, Matt Leinart signed on with the Oakland Raiders and put himself into a familiar spot.  Not only is he back in California, but he is back to studying under Carson Palmer.We all know what results that yielded back when he was sporting the cardinal and gold.  Could lightning strike twice for Leinart? Continue reading

Super Early College Football Top Five

Photo courtesy of Louisianasportstalk.com. Les Miles (pictured above) did not prepare his team the way he should have for the National Championship Game. Expect his LSU Tigers to walk away with the National Championship in January of 2013.

By Josh Kramer

The late-great basketball coach Skip Prosser once told me, “If you can’t be on time, be early.”  Well in this case, I am going to be super early.  The big game, which unfortunately did not end up being “big” by any means, concluded the College Football season on Monday night.  And despite a very disappointing finish to what had been a magical season in Baton Rouge, good things are ahead for the Tigers.  Who really cares if the season just ended, Spring Ball is right around the corner as die-hard fans across the country pray their team will be “the” team in 2012 and early 2013.  Here is an early look ahead.

Top Five:

1.  LSU Tigers:  Do not let Monday’s game take away from what this team accomplished this past season.  Eight wins against ranked foes.  Five of those on the road.  Plus this team returns the majority of it’s vaunted defense, including the Honey Badger and Eric Reid.  In addition, find me a better stable of running backs.   LSU was the nation’s best team in 2011.  They just didn’t finish the job.  Also, next year, their schedule is much more favorable.  The Tide have to come to Baton Rouge and the non-conference slate is not exactly mind-boggling (N. Texas, Idaho, Washington, Towson). Continue reading

Week 13 NFL Power Rankings: Packers Remain Perfect

Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. James Jones (pictured above) had a huge game in Detroit on Thanksgiviing. Can the defending champs do the unthinkable and complete a perfect season?

By Wesley Kaminsky

With five games to go in the 2011 NFL season, the Green Bay Packers have remained undefeated and got past their biggest test on Thanksgiving with ease. That defense, which was supposed to get lit up against a high-powered Lions offense didn’t by any means, as they picked off Matthew Stafford three times.

And that Aaron Rodgers guy? He continued to play at an MVP level as he threw for 307 yards, and two touchdowns. Can any team in the NFC stop the Packers from returning to the Super Bowl? It’s going to be pretty difficult to try to do that at Lambeau Field during the playoffs. Aside from the Saints, I can’t see any team winning there.

The Packers have had the top spot of these power rankings since Week 1, and they don’t look like they are going to give it up anytime soon. Continue reading

Week 12 NFL Power Rankings: Bears Win Fifth Straight, Lose Jay Cutler

Photo courtesy of bearsgab.com. Jay Cutler (pictured above) will likely be sidelined for the rest of the regular season. How will the Bears respond without their offensive leader?

By Wesley Kaminsky

Last week it was Matt Schaub who was lost for the season with a foot injury, just when the Texans looked like they were getting it all together. A week later, it’s Jay Cutler who will likely miss the remainder of the regular season with a broken thumb on his throwing hand that will require surgery. This couldn’t come at a worse time for a Bears team who have five straight games and look like a legitimate threat to the Packers. Now, that talk will have to wait, as the Bears turn to Caleb Hanie, and pray he can lead them back to the playoffs.

1. Green Bay Packers (1, won 35-26): 10-0. Next up, the Packers get their biggest test of the season yet: In Detroit, on Thanksgiving. (Next game: at Detroit) Continue reading

Week 11 NFL Power Rankings: Eagles Hit Rock Bottom

Photo courtesy of withfriendship.com. Andy Reid (pictured above) appears to be sitting on a boiling seat these days. His time in Philadelphia appears about done.

By Wesley Kaminsky

Eagles 34, Cowboys 7. That was the score three weeks ago when the Eagles dominated the Cowboys, winning their second straight game, leading people to believe that the self-proclaimed “Dream Team” had finally figured it out.

How fooled we all were.

After a Week 9 home loss to the Bears on Monday Night Football, Eagles fans had all but lost hope. Week 10 was a new low, as they lost to the John Skelton-led Cardinals in Philadelphia 21-17. At 3-6, Andy Reid’s seat has never been hotter, and the city of Philadelphia has lost its patience. Michael Vick has regressed this season, and his status is in doubt for their Sunday Night game in New York. If he cannot go, Vince Young, the very man who proclaimed the Eagles the “Dream Team” would start. Oh, joy. Continue reading