CFB Off Season

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Author: [College Football] Topic: CFB Off Season
WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/15/2017 9:22:48 AM
ARKANSAS - Defend the run.  Defend the run:  If the Razorbacks had bothered to approach defending the run in 2016, things would have looked a lot different during a 7-6 season.  Instead, Arkansas was always trying to outscore teams, and that's no way to go through a season, especially in the SEC.  New defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads will be the new voice for the defense.  Rhoads will switch to a 3-4 base defense from the 4-3 the Razorbacks ran last year.  The make over is badly need but how much it helps in 2017 is yet to be seen.  Arkansas was ranked 89th in the country in run defense last year giving up 215 yards per game.  Bret Bielema is entering his fifth season at Arkansas with a 25-26 record.  Let's just say the run defense needs to get better!

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Posted: 3/16/2017 7:21:11 AM
ALABAMA - With four former 5-Star running backs competing for the starting job, Bama's backfield will be the battle of the spring.  It's no secret Saban wants to run the ball more this year and he has a stud group of backs to carry out that goal.  Junior Damiem Harris, junior Bo Scarbrough, sophomore Josh Jacobs and sophomore B.J. Emmons all played last year with Harris going over 1,000 yards.  Add in 5-Star, number one RB recruit Najee Harris who is on campus and will go through spring drills and you have one talented RB grouping.  This will be a fascinating competition this spring and summer. 

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/17/2017 12:52:08 PM
MISSISSIPPI STATE - The University recently gave head football coach Dan Mullen a contract extension that will run through the 2021 season.  Mullen is beginning his ninth season with the Bulldogs and is set to make $4.5 million this season and is currently the second-longest tenured head coach in the SEC.  During his time in Starkville, he has produced a 61-42 record and is just 12 wins away from being the schools all time leader.  Mullen was named SEC and National Coach of the Year in 2014.  Good move on Mississippi State's part because it is hard to win at the school, especially being in the SEC West Division.

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/18/2017 8:00:00 AM
OHIO STATE - The Buckeyes started spring practice on March 7th, having to once again fill in some massive talent holes.  For anyone else (except Alabama) losing what OSU does would be a killer.  However, the defensive line will be the best in the Big Ten and maybe the country.  The offensive line will also be really good.  Years of excellent recruiting will create several great position battles this spring and summer.  The athletes are there...the coaching is there...and the expectations are there.  After all, Meyer is an amazing 61-6 since he arrived.

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/18/2017 8:49:19 AM
TRUST - COMITTMENT - LOVE

Your TALENT determines what you can do.  Your MOTIVATION determines how much you are willing to do.  Your ATTITUDE determines how well you can do it.

Lou Holtz - Notre Dame coach   


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Posted: 3/19/2017 10:46:52 AM
TEXAS A&M - The quarterback competition will arguably be the biggest storyline heading into next year for the Aggies.  With last year's starter headed to the NFL, it isn't known who will start the opener against UCLA in Pasadena.  Senior Jake Hubenak and redshirt freshman Nick Starkel return this year along with highly rated incoming freshman Kellon Mond.  Mond is a true dual threat athlete who chose the Aggies over Clemson, Ohio State, Georgia, Auburn, LSU, Baylor, Miami and a few others.  The big advantage Mond gives the offense is his ability to make plays with his feet.  The quarterback battle will certainly be of great interest to Aggie faithful.

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/20/2017 10:18:24 AM
PAC - 12 - Oregon, Arizona State and Cal all fielded horrible defenses last year.  But these programs have hired three accomplished names to combat there defensive woes.  Former Fresno State coach Tim DeRuyter is California's new defensive coordinator.  New Arizona State DC Phil Bennett was once SMU's head coach, while Oregon DC Jim Leavitte is a former South Florida head man.  There's enough name power there to expect at least some positive results on the field.  While improvement may take some time, progress will be worth tracking.  If any of these teams enjoys a boost on the defensive side, the Pac-12 complexion will change.  All three schools pack potent offenses, so any betterment elsewhere can change this league's list of contenders and pretenders.

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Posted: 3/21/2017 8:11:21 AM
WESTERN MICHIGAN - The Broncos had a great season last year by winning 13 games.  Don't expect the same results this year.  Western Michigan lost their coach (P.J. Fleck)  as well as quarterback Zack Terrell (3,533 yards, 33 TDs, 69% completion rate) and wide receiver Corey Davis (97 catches, 19 TDs).  Those will be big shoes to fill, especially losing the best coach in the MAC.  Because of Fleck's strong recruiting like a mid-tier Big Ten program, the Broncos will still be a player in the conference.  I have them winning 8 or nine this season.  After all, they will open on the road against Southern Cal and at Michigan State...two tough outs.

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/22/2017 1:26:46 PM
ARKANSAS STATE - The Red Wolves have some serious questions to answer this off-season.  How's the offensive line going to look?  How long will it take to replace all five starters and find the right combination?  How's the defensive line going to look?  Three very solid starters are gone.  Arkansas State stunk in the red zone last year and has to learn how to score at every opportunity, especially inside the 20.  Yeah, lots of questions for the Wolves.

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Posted: 3/23/2017 8:32:58 AM
NORTH CAROLINA - Few programs lose more on offense this off-season than the Tar Heels, who say goodbye to future NFL quarterback Mitch Trubisky, top running back Elijah Hood, and top receivers Ryan Switzer and Bug Howard.  That's a huge chunk of North Carolina's offense, and the quarterback turnover could be something to watch.  As the ACC expands its depth, particularly in the Coastal Division, North Carolina's offensive setback could quickly drop the Tar Heels down the standings.  The Tar Heels also lose defensive coordinator Gene Chizik who retired.

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 3/24/2017 9:51:38 AM
COLORADO - The problem with the strong season (10-4) the Buffalos produced last season is that they're very hard to maintain.  Colorado made a surprising six win leap from 2015 to '16, but even if they don't drop back to the bottom of the Pac 12 South, they're likely to regress a bit.  With Steven Montez taking over at quarterback and Phillip Lindsay back at running back, the offense should be in decent shape, but just three returning defensive starters spells trouble for a unit that finished 12th in the country in defensive S&P ratings.  To make matters more difficult, Colorado won't sneak up on anyone this year.

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Posted: 3/25/2017 9:50:48 AM
CLEMSON - Defending national champion Clemson is among the most intriguing teams in college football entering the 2017 season.  All-American quarterback Deshaun Watson is headed to the NFL, and that along is reason to think the Tigers will begin the year pegged to finish behind Florida State.  But this program recruits at an elite level, has an outstanding defensive line, should get improved play on the offensive line and has earned the benefit of the doubt.  Still, there will be major weapons to replace on offense and key leaders like LB Ben Boulware on defense.  Clemson will enjoy a new athletic complex that may just be the nicest/best in the nation like Dabo needs another tool for recruiting.

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Posted: 3/26/2017 11:10:56 AM
TEXAS - Do the Longhorns have the same potential as new coach Tom Herman's first team at Houston, which went 13-1 and won the Peach Bowl.  Probably not.  Texas won't win the Big 12, but a change in culture and a huge uptick in production on offense should find the Horns with eight or nine wins in 2017.  Herman is a worker and will turn the program around, but he may need a year or two to get championship level.  Herman was definitely a great hire by Texas.

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Posted: 3/27/2017 8:28:16 AM
ARIZONA - Rich Rodriquez (36-29) enters the 2017 season needing to rebound from a 3-9 season with only one Pac 12 win.  Making matters worse, the athletic director who hired him has moved to Alabama to be the Crimson Tide's new AD.  Dave Heeke was hired as the new AD for the Wildcats and he has no connection to coach Rods making it easier to bring in his own coach.  Rodriquez can't afford another 3-9 season or he might be shown the door.  Can you say "Hot Seat".

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Posted: 3/28/2017 10:17:19 AM
TEXAS TECH - Kliff Kingsbury enters his fifth season in Lubbock with an overall record of 24-26 and a Big 12 record of 13-23.  The Red Raiders have made only two bowl games in his first four seasons, and while his teams have scored plenty of points, they've given up a lot more.  Either some emphasis is given to the defensive side of the ball this season or Mr. Kingsbury will be in the market for a new job.  Can you say "HOT SEAT?"

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Posted: 3/29/2017 8:07:54 AM
WEST VIRGINIA - The Mountaineers have to find new receivers after losing top targets Shelton Gibson and Daikiel Shorts, and they have to replace veteran quarterback Skyler Howard.  That's where Florida transfer Will Grier comes in, with tremendous hype and plenty of potential.  Grier sat out the last year-and-a-half after getting busted for PEDs, but that may be a plus now.  With a year in the West Virginia program, he knows what he's doing now.  Grier needs to play well this season for the team to come anywhere near last season's 10-3 record.

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Posted: 3/30/2017 10:34:24 AM
SOUTH CAROLINA - While the Gamecocks had a better season than expected in 2016, the offensive line was a liability for the team most of the year.  With the amount of great pass rushers playing in the SEC, this was a position group South Carolina needed to address.  During the offseason, Will Muschamp brought back a familiar face to oversee the continued growth of the 0-line.  Former Youngstown State head coach and SF 49er offensive line coach Eric Wolford.  Given that the Gamecocks can usually get after the passer like the rest of their SEC opponents, how this front five of Wolford's holds up may just indicate how much SC will improve this season.  Who knows, an improved O-line could make the team a dark horse to contend in the weak SEC East.

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Posted: 3/31/2017 8:19:31 AM
CLEMSON- Head coach Dabo Swinney earned a $1.75 million bonus for winning the national championship and hitting APR marks.  Swinney will earn over $6.1 million in total salary (including the bonus)  during 2017.

Mama's don't let your babies grow up to be cowboys...coaching pays more.

  equals 


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Posted: 4/1/2017 12:28:15 PM
UCLA - With new offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch being lured away from Michigan, where he excelled as a quarterback coach joining  quarterback Josh Rosen who is back this spring from injury that cost him much of his sophomore year...the offense seems to be in good hands.  With Rosen out, the Bruins spiraled out of control, finishing 4-8 last year.  This season with playmakers around him, a healthy Rosen should shine and help UCLA bounce back in a big way.  I wouldn't sleep on the Bruins this season.

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LonghornHoosier PM LonghornHoosier
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Posted: 4/1/2017 9:08:51 PM
WT - I think 10 starters back is always good.  Maybe they just needed to be coached up, with a better scheme...I would take experience v talent to start the season any day...
LonghornHoosier PM LonghornHoosier
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Posted: 4/1/2017 9:10:30 PM
QUOTE
Agreed...with all those starters returning, they will be somewhat competitive....won't win the big XII, but it will be progress and a descent bowl.  hook em


Originally Posted by WalterTibbs:

TEXAS - Do the Longhorns have the same potential as new coach Tom Herman's first team at Houston, which went 13-1 and won the Peach Bowl.  Probably not.  Texas won't win the Big 12, but a change in culture and a huge uptick in production on offense should find the Horns with eight or nine wins in 2017.  Herman is a worker and will turn the program around, but he may need a year or two to get championship level.  Herman was definitely a great hire by Texas.

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Posted: 4/2/2017 7:50:10 AM
TCU - If the Horned Frogs can put together a full season, they'll be just fine.  The 2016 season (6-7) was plagued by turnovers, penalties, poor wide receiver play and a general lack of toughness.  Quarterback Kenny Hill (Tx A&M transfer) will have another year under his belt, and last year's struggles will help him grow.  Though the Frogs have a difficult schedule with games at Arkansas, Oklahoma State, Kansas State and home games against Texas, Oklahoma and West Virginia, the Frogs can still split those games and have a good season.

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WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 4/2/2017 10:57:22 PM
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Originally Posted by LonghornHoosier:

WT - I think 10 starters back is always good.  Maybe they just needed to be coached up, with a better scheme...I would take experience v talent to start the season any day...

NEGATIVE my friend.  If I'm a coach and have the same multi starters who couldn't stop a cold and help me lose 7,8,9 games.  I'm looking for new players with Talent.

I wouldn't get hung up on this starter crap unless they were tough as nails the previous season.  Twenty two starters coming back on a 2-10 team means the coach is in trouble.  Just saying........
WalterTibbs PM WalterTibbs
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Posted: 4/2/2017 11:38:17 PM
Early dental appointment (HELL) tomorrow morning so trying to get in some early post.

NORTHWESTERN - No spring game, boring as hell trying to watch the NW spring scrimmage Saturday.  Moving on, the Wildcats must play Wisconsin, Penn State and Nebraska, but that's pretty much the extent of their schedule difficulty.  With Clayton Thorsen entering his junior year, the QB should do enough to balance stud RB Justin Jackson's running ability.  Considering NW's defense is usually pretty tough, that lines up for a maybe a strong season.  Did I mention that 16 veterans return from a team last year that was pretty damn good.

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Posted: 4/3/2017 12:29:50 PM
MIAMI - Mark Richt has the Hurricanes off to a great start recruiting for 2018 with 15 commitments.  All fifteen recruits are in-state prospects with eleven coming from either Dade, Broward or Palm Beach counties.  Richt has made south Florida Miami's backyard and it's paying off in a major way.  Coach Richt is on a mission for sure!

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