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2018 Preseason thoughts

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Author: [College Football] Topic: 2018 Preseason thoughts
JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/6/2018 11:51:50 AM

Gonna be a very interesting season and I just wanted to share some takes and discuss what we could be seeing when things kick off here later this month. 

 

Tua Tagovailoa is the wrong QB to be getting the Heisman hype. This reminds me a lot of the hype Garrett Gilbert was getting at Texas after his performance filling in for Colt McCoy in the 2009 National Title game. Tua will have a great offensive line and Alabama will lean heavy on the run game so I have no clue why anyone who knows how Nick Saban runs that program would by into any Alabama QB stock. Personally, I'm not even sure if Tua is a Top 5 QB in the country (Just such a small sample size to make a fair assesment).

If I'm looking at a QB who could produce Heisman numbers then I'm looking at Will Greer (WVU) who brings back his #1 target in David Sills. The Mountaineers are going to be a high powered offense and could very well push for a Big 12 title if injuries don't slow them down and Greer will be the leader of it all.

I'd buy more stock in Ohio State's Dwayne Haskins or Texas' Sam Ehlinger over Tua Tagovailoa. That is NOT me saying both are better QB's but in the offensive systems that OSU and Texas run the QB is called to do more than Tua will be called to do at Alabama. 

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/6/2018 11:53:45 AM
QUOTE Originally Posted by JB_Bishop:

If I'm looking at a QB who could produce Heisman numbers then I'm looking at Will Greer (WVU) who brings back his #1 target in David Sills. The Mountaineers are going to be a high powered offense and could very well push for a Big 12 title if injuries don't slow them down and Greer will be the leader of it all.


Will's last name is spelled Grier*
JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/6/2018 12:30:57 PM
Oklahoma was the Baker Mayfield show last season as he lit up opposing defenses on and off the field. Now Oklahoma has to decide who to direct their offense between Kyler Murray and Austin Kendall. Any A&M fan would tell you Murray is probably better suited to start working on hitting the off speed pitches than he is reading a defense. Murray's speed is electric but his arm doesn't worry opposing defensive coordinators. 

It will be interesting to see how it plays out, OU will likely lean on RB Rodney Anderson early while they get Murray or Kendall running the offense to the level the Sooners will need if they want to repeat as Big 12 Champs. Defense will need to improve from last season's group who had trouble keeping points off the board including the 2nd half meltdown in the Rose Bowl which saw Oklahoma drop their ticket to the National Title game. 

Lincoln Riley's coaching ability will really start to show up over the next two years as he transitions from the inherited talent that was under Bob Stoops to the talent he will recruit year in and year out. 
MikeMed PM MikeMed
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Posted: 8/6/2018 1:35:21 PM

Good stuff JB   - post more often.

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/6/2018 3:25:51 PM
This is easily the first time in years I have looked forward to seeing what Texas can do on the field. They are NOT back but I think they are heading in the right direction. Tom Herman will have to find a way to get a running game going to take some pressure off of either Ehlinger or Buechele (Ehlinger will likely start but staying healthy is my worry). They picked up grad transfer RB Tre Watson from Cal to help add depth but the Horns will still need someone else to help carry the load. The offensive line has been a joke for the better half of a decade now but this year they should show some improvement with the addition of grad transfer OT Calvin Anderson to go along with a lot of experience returning from last years starters. 

Texas DC Todd Orlando is one more solid campaign away from landing his first head coaching gig and he has enough pieces coming back from last seasons squad (Hager, Johnson, Boyd, & Jones) to go along with an excellent recruiting class on the defensive side of the ball that they inked back in February. 

Honestly, the ceiling is pretty high for this team. 11 wins isn't as crazy as it looks on paper. I am not predicting that along with an appearance in the Big 12 Championship game but 9-3 seems very obtainable provided they stay healthy and the offense can get away from the feast or famine season they had last year. 
JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/7/2018 9:49:21 AM
Looking for good value teams this year and I can't help but think Baylor will bring home some bacon this year after a 1-11 season. Rhule heads into year two at Baylor and you have to think that they find some answers on defense to get them to at least 5 wins with a very manageable early schedule and be more competitive that last years results. 

Fresno State will have a high powered offense rolling through the MWC this season. The Bulldogs also return 7 starters on defense off of a team who split 2 games with Boise State (MWC Champs) last season. In the last three season Fresno State is 12-5 ATS at home but just 9-9 on the road. Also matches Jeff Tedford's career numbers which have him 54-21 SU at home and 31-36 on the road during his time at Cal.

Middle Tennessee returns Brandon Stockstill back for what feels like his 8th season there. The Blue Raiders didn't do themselves many favors in scheduling Vandy, Georgia, and Kentucky, but outside of those 3 games there are 7-8 winnable games with the experience they return on both sides of the ball.  

Michigan might have the best defense that no one seems to be talking about with Bush, Gary, Hudson, and Winovich. Offensively they return their entire receiving core from last year. Their ceiling will be as high as transfer QB Shea Patterson can take them. QB play has been what has held them back in the past and if Patterson can throw for 2,800+ and keep a good TD/INT ratio Michigan could make some noise and potentially make their way to their first Big 10 Title game. 

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/7/2018 1:56:06 PM
I can't be the only one who completely forgot Michigan State was a 10 win team last season (Won 4 games by a TD or less). They get Ohio State and Michigan at home in East Lansing this season. LJ Scott is back for Sparty as well as QB Brian Lewerke. Defense returns 9 of 11 starters from last season and we should all be aware that Dantonio in a great coach. 
WISEGUY36 PM WISEGUY36
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Posted: 8/7/2018 2:05:06 PM

  " Go SPARTY "  

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/7/2018 3:16:49 PM
California has some of my attention. They return a 1,000 yard rusher in Patrick Laird along with a 3,000 yard passer in Ross Bowers who gets his top two WR's back from last season. The Bears enter year two under Justin Wilcox which means we should see a bit more efficiency from both sides of the ball. Looking at the schedule I can see a 7-5 team if Wilcox can get some of those close losses from last season to turn the other way this year.  

Could see some growing pains for USC with Stanford and Texas on the schedule in the 1st three weeks of the season while they get a new QB up to speed to fill in the shoes Sam Darnold leaves behind. 

I have a wait and see approach to UCLA. How quickly will Chip Kelly get someone else's recruits up to speed on his system? Gonna be willing to bet not before Oklahoma puts up 40+ on the Bruins. November 3rd should be interesting when Kelly goes back to Oregon for the first time as an opposing coach. 
JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/7/2018 3:58:52 PM
Texas A&M got the coach of their dreams, one who I didn't think they would be able to pull (Jimbo Fisher), and now they have to find a way to improve their passing game. Seems like the Aggies tend to run the ball early in the season with success until teams load the box and say beat us through the air where A&M hasn't had a QB capable of doing so on a consistent basis. They face a daunting September slate with Clemson rolling into College Station with arguable the most ferocious DL that we will see this season. Then they travel to Tuscaloosa to face Alabama. Ideally they enter October 3-2 then deal with the 3 game road trip @ South Carolina, @ Mississippi State, and @ Auburn. Could be a rude introduction to the SEC for Jimbo. Silver lining: This is as good of a year as any to finally beat LSU (Hopefully)! 
JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/8/2018 12:24:39 PM

There are always 15 or so teams who are just terrible against the spread losing 65% or more... Who will some of those teams be this year? an_lightan_light

FloridaState PM FloridaState
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Posted: 8/8/2018 12:58:59 PM
QUOTE

Originally Posted by JB_Bishop:

Texas A&M got the coach of their dreams, one who I didn't think they would be able to pull (Jimbo Fisher), and now they have to find a way to improve their passing game. Seems like the Aggies tend to run the ball early in the season with success until teams load the box and say beat us through the air where A&M hasn't had a QB capable of doing so on a consistent basis. They face a daunting September slate with Clemson rolling into College Station with arguable the most ferocious DL that we will see this season. Then they travel to Tuscaloosa to face Alabama. Ideally they enter October 3-2 then deal with the 3 game road trip @ South Carolina, @ Mississippi State, and @ Auburn. Could be a rude introduction to the SEC for Jimbo. Silver lining: This is as good of a year as any to finally beat LSU (Hopefully)!

I hope he loses every friggin game!an_wink

I ain't salty tholie

THEMUGG PM THEMUGG
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Posted: 8/8/2018 1:56:28 PM
QUOTE

Originally Posted by JB_Bishop:

California has some of my attention. They return a 1,000 yard rusher in Patrick Laird along with a 3,000 yard passer in Ross Bowers who gets his top two WR's back from last season. The Bears enter year two under Justin Wilcox which means we should see a bit more efficiency from both sides of the ball. Looking at the schedule I can see a 7-5 team if Wilcox can get some of those close losses from last season to turn the other way this year.  Could see some growing pains for USC with Stanford and Texas on the schedule in the 1st three weeks of the season while they get a new QB up to speed to fill in the shoes Sam Darnold leaves behind. I have a wait and see approach to UCLA. How quickly will Chip Kelly get someone else's recruits up to speed on his system? Gonna be willing to bet not before Oklahoma puts up 40+ on the Bruins. November 3rd should be interesting when Kelly goes back to Oregon for the first time as an opposing coach.

I would expect Cal to be better........not necessarily a better SU record but ATS. Watching Wilcox when he was here under Sark, you could see this guy was HC material. But he's still got a long road to hoe as it's tough to get many top recruits to Cal.

 Defense will still be an issue at UCLA for a while. Don't know if Chippy is gonna try to run the same system there as he did at oregon, but if he does I'll be looking to play the over in some of their games. I believe they'll be better by the last few games, but I wouldn't expect miracles this season.

  USC might be a 7-5/8-4 team this year.........& that'll be all on their talent. They'll slowly slide back to mediocrity under Helton.

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/9/2018 4:31:54 PM

Really not to sure what to make of FSU this season. Their win total is set at 7.5 and that seems about right with the schedule they face. 8-4 is certainly reasonable and 9-3 wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility. They have a pretty tough 5 game stretch to finish the season starting off with hosting Clemson followed by back to back road games @ NC State and @ Notre Dame then finish it off with Boston College and Florida at home.

I'm very much still concerned with their offensive line which was a big weakness for the Noles last season. Their defense has consistently reloaded and after losing 8 starters from last years team that is a small concern to go along with the new coaching schemes they have all been adjusting to. I can't help but think there are some growing pains for FSU along the way, just hope those pains don't include any injuries to the big name playmakers like Francios, Akers, Patrick, Murray, ect. Gonna be very interesting to see how Taggart does at FSU. 

WISEGUY36 PM WISEGUY36
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Posted: 8/9/2018 4:50:20 PM
QUOTE Originally Posted by JB_Bishop:

Really not to sure what to make of FSU this season. Their win total is set at 7.5 and that seems about right with the schedule they face. 8-4 is certainly reasonable and 9-3 wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility. They have a pretty tough 5 game stretch to finish the season starting off with hosting Clemson followed by back to back road games @ NC State and @ Notre Dame then finish it off with Boston College and Florida at home.

I'm very much still concerned with their offensive line which was a big weakness for the Noles last season. Their defense has consistently reloaded and after losing 8 starters from last years team that is a small concern to go along with the new coaching schemes they have all been adjusting to. I can't help but think there are some growing pains for FSU along the way, just hope those pains don't include any injuries to the big name playmakers like Francios, Akers, Patrick, Murray, ect. Gonna be very interesting to see how Taggart does at FSU. 





I think it will be interesting to see how successful Taggart is in
preparing a team to compete in the ACC .


JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/9/2018 6:51:33 PM
QUOTE

Originally Posted by WISEGUY36:

 

I think it will be interesting to see how successful Taggart is in preparing a team to compete in the ACC .

Taggart has the resources and personality to dominate the state of Florida in terms of recruiting. Gotta fix the OL and continue to put out elite defenses full of NFL talent. Will be very interesting to see what 2022 FSU looks like. Until I see trends on the field going the right direction, I'm looking at betting against FSU in terms of lines (Unders in terms of totals) this season. Public darling as a historic program but a lot of moving parts now moving in a new direction. 

WISEGUY36 PM WISEGUY36
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Posted: 8/9/2018 7:03:26 PM
Taggart is stepping up in class as a coach in the ACC.

There is a lot expected of him.


JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/9/2018 7:26:09 PM

Looking at USF in terms of returning production: They lose a lot from last years team (QB Flowers, RB Tice, RB Johnson) but when you see their schedule, they have 6 gimmie wins. Very soft schedule that allows for these young players to develop on the field and feel good about it because Elon, ECU, UMass, Tulsa will not be hard to handle teams in their first 5 games. Gonna be interesting to see what kind of scoring numbers they can produce after putting up 38.3 PPG last year and it would be a little foolish to think that doesn't drop off a bit. Gonna have to watch how the oddsmakers set the lines for them early on. 

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/11/2018 4:28:05 PM

Coach O really has his work cut out for him this year. New QB, no returning RB's who had a TD last season or even 200 yards rushing, Top 3 WR's from 2017 are gone... Things could get very ugly in Baton Rouge this season. The defense will clearly be called on to keep things competitive but history has shown us that when teams struggle to score 24+ PPG offensively (Which I'd guess LSU will be in the 20-22 PPG range) then the defense tends to wear down over time. Looking at their schedule, 5-7 seems about what we can expect from the Tigers this season but 4-8 also wouldn't surprise me as Louisiana Tech would love to do what Troy did last season and upset the Tigers in Death Valley. Have a feeling Coach O won't be making it back after this year. 

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/13/2018 9:44:19 AM

I'm not a fan of playing futures. Just don't like tying up funds in long term bets. With that being side here are the three guys I like preseason for the Heisman: 

 

Will Grier QB West Virginia (+1600)

Grier should top 4,000 yards passing and be right around 40 TD's through the air if he is able to stay healthy. His Heisman moment would come sometime in November as WVU plays Texas, TCU, OSU and OU all in the final month of the season. 

 

Khalil Tate QB Arizona (+1600)

Tate is a dynamic playmaker and Kevin Sumlin's system could really make him shine like it did for Johnny Manziel. I'm not gonna beat around the bush here, Tate will need monster numbers since Arizona doesn't play Washington this season and even then we have seen a east coast bais when it comes to the voters. 

 

Jonathan Taylor RB Wisconsin (+800)

Hard to not consider laying a few on one of the best RB's in the country who runs behind the best offensive line in college football. Gonna need a big game in Ann Arbor against one of the top defenses in college football this season in Michigan. Wisconsin avoids Ohio State until a potential Big 10 Championship so that will have to be a good game for Taylor. 

 

 

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/14/2018 1:19:55 PM

Arkansas State should be favored in majority of their games by a TD or more. Justice Hansen is one of the best returning QB's in terms of yards and TD's from 2017. Hansen will need to cut down on the turnovers and if he does there is no reason to think we won't see the Red Wolves in the Sun Belt Championship game. Defense had some key players to replace but they face one of the easiest schedules in the conference so with that and an offense that should not have any trouble scoring points, they will have room to grow without too much pressure being put on them to stand up to win games. 

MikeMed PM MikeMed
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Posted: 8/14/2018 2:02:04 PM
QUOTE

Originally Posted by JB_Bishop:

Arkansas State should be favored in majority of their games by a TD or more. Justice Hansen is one of the best returning QB's in terms of yards and TD's from 2017. Hansen will need to cut down on the turnovers and if he does there is no reason to think we won't see the Red Wolves in the Sun Belt Championship game. Defense had some key players to replace but they face one of the easiest schedules in the conference so with that and an offense that should not have any trouble scoring points, they will have room to grow without too much pressure being put on them to stand up to win games.

 

Yeah, Troy should dominate the SBC West with the weak schedule they face......They likely win 9 games maybe even 10 despite not being improved from their 7 win team last season.......Justice Hansen is by far the best QB in the SBC and could even be a late draft pick in the NFL next season......They will face Troy in the SBC Championship game........Despite Troy losing QB Brandon Silvers I still like them to win the SBC.........

The ARKY ST win total line is 8.5 I love them to go over that total and will be placing a wager on that.

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/16/2018 8:34:46 AM

Still can't get over how much hype is being spread on Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa. Did Nick Saban tell someone he wants to stop running the football? Damien Harris, Najee Harris, and Josh Jacobs will be fed and it will be Tua's job to not turn the ball over.

If Tagovailoa's Passing total was 2,500 yards for the season would y'all be looking to bet over or under?

2017: Hurts 2,081 yards on 154 completions (RB's had over 600 carries and Hurts had 154 of those)

2016: Hurts 2,780 yards on 240 completions (RB's had over 600 carries and Hurts had 191 of those)

2015: Coker 3,110 yards on 263 completions (RB's had over 600 carries. 395 carried by Henry)

2014: Sims 3,487 yards on 252 completions (RB's had 567 carries)

 

Alabama did lose Calvin Ridley who accounted for 63 receptions and 967 yards. No other WR from last years team had 15 catches OR 300 yards receiving. 

JB_Bishop PM JB_Bishop
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Posted: 8/16/2018 9:05:02 AM

Teams with win totals projected at 3 or less...

Kent State, Oregon State, UTEP, UConn, Hawaii, ECU, Kansas, Rice, San Jose State, Louisiana (Previously known as ULL), Ball State, Charlotte, New Mexico, Georgia State, Illinois, and Vanderbilt. 

Some of these teams will be great fade material.

WISEGUY36 PM WISEGUY36
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Posted: 8/16/2018 9:18:26 AM
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