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CHAMPIONSHIP NITPICKERY/SOMETHING'S ALWAYS WRONG

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Something is amiss with your championship team, even if they are perfect shining golden babies right now in your starstruck eyes.

Georgia. Defensively there's so little to chip away at here: South Carolina rushed 16 times for 18 yards, passing yards accumulated but did so harmlessly, and thus far the defense has allowed one TD. Also, the have Rennie Curran, and any objective analysis of their defense blurs when he starts slamming into people as he did against South Carolina, jittering around for six tackles, a sack, two qb hurries, and generally emitting a fragrant mist of terror in his vicinity on the way to SEC Defensive Player of the Week honors. The defense led the way to Spurrier's own House of Defeat and Pancakes in this weekend's slapfight, not the offense.

The one concern: the merely good blocking up front, which looks just a shade down from last year in terms of effect and intensity. (Yes, repeating: necessary SC/UGA disclaimer, but still: it's what we've got to work with.)

Interesting number: Zero: the amount of value any actual conjecture about the SEC East has at this point, especially with Vanderbilt sitting at 1-0 in the division and Florida/Tennessee looming next week. They'll probably all lose to each other! Or not!

USC. Lacks a win against a team of real value thus far.

Fails to write thank you cards promptly. Sometimes looks like they're thinking about so many things at once that you think they're just not listening, but instead thinking about something else, and you'd be right. They're thinking about killing. Sweet, unrelenting killing.

Thus the bullishness in general on them: this remains a superb defensive team with a strong run game whose weakest point may be their lack of a gamebreaking wide receiver, and their tendency to rack up penalty yards, a crap complaint at any rate since plenty of championship teams like to toss out little cookies like that to lesser teams. It's a federal law, we think for teams of asskicking quality to commit at least eight penalties a game just to make things interesting.

Number of interest: 9. The number of teeth embedded in Rey Maualuga's forearm on Sunday morning. He's collecting.

Missouri Offense displays Mongol Horde manners by greeting their opponents with a hail of arrows and death, most notably in the form of Jeremy Maclin, who has no mercy for the people of the steppe. They have done this against middling to weak competition, and did allow 451 unforgivable yards to Juice Williams, a pure dropback passer of the highest quality. This is a warning that Missouri is the Chuck Liddell of this group: they play with their hands down, and in the Baghdad leadstorm that is the Big 12, they will get knocked out for their passive defense. BUT POINTS SCORE FAST ZOWIEBANG!

Fascinating number: Two, the number of players differentiating them from being Texas Tech: Jeremy Maclin and Chase Daniel. The creeping suspicion we have them tragically overvalued will not go away.

Notre Dame. Made you look! We kid. They still reek of bad cheese and sad.

Florida Suddenly, the offensive line has communication problems despite being allegedly experienced, deep, and well-coordinated. Of larger concern still: the unproven secondary, since they faced little challenge in terms of passing from the Reggie Ball offense of Miami. Complaint revisted out of necessity: the relative lack of production from the interior of the defensive line. Game against Tennessee may not even give full litmus test value since Jonathan Crompton seems to enjoy hoisting balls into double coverage just to see how secure he can be in Dave Clawson's love. Add in aforementioned SEC East cannibalization, and a juggernaut this is not (yet.)

Penn State Have yet to drive the spread HD against anyone of any real substance, though fundamentally it certainly looks like it could work: power running, getting a mobile qb outside the pocket, and all of those things defensive coordinators really, really hate having to build into a gameplan. Bradley's defense looks predictably impenetrable, but they won't see a serious test until 10/11 when they travel to Wisconsin.

Marvelous number: 4,829,992, or the hypothetical number of points they could have scored against Syracuse in pregame statistical progressions. The spread was, for the purposes of fair wagering, set at "GODDAMN, SON."