Sunday, November 08, 2009

Power 12: The 'Welcome Back Julio' Edition

I almost called it the flip-flop edition, because we've got a shake-up at the top.

1.) Alabama
Here's the best way I can describe this team: they're the most complete football team that still has yet to play a complete football game. And yet, they keep winning. Woe unto the team that has to face Alabama when they put it all together.

And the reason I decided to bump them up to #1 here is that, after giving this a lot of thought, I think that the Tide match-up well with the Gators. That, and the Tide have been looking forward to a re-match ever since the tussle in Atlanta last December. I think 'Bama will want it more. So I think Alabama is going to win that game. Thus the flip-flop: it wouldn't make sense for me to keep leaving the Tide below the Gators in these rankings when I actually think Alabama will win the game head-to-head.

2.) Florida : not only am I bumping them down, but I'm putting the Gators on upset alert. In their SIXTH straight SEC game, they have to go face the old ballcoach up in Columbia. Look out Gators.
3.) Texas : they have the easiest road to the BCS Championship Game.
4.) Texas Christian : crossing their fingers for a Longhorns loss.
5.) Boise State : their win at Oregon looks less impressive after the Ducks' 2nd loss.
6.) Georgia Tech : of all the potential BCS Championship Game match-ups, this one would scare me the most. I want no part with the Wramblin' Wreck. NONE.
7.) Cincinnati
8.) Pittsburgh
9.) LSU : they've only lost to the two best teams in the country.
10.) Oregon
--
11.) Iowa
12.) Miami

Dropped Out: Penn State

12 comments:

Nick Faris said...

After 1a, 1b, and 1c, I have to say that Cincinnati is the team to beat. They look impressive consistently.

III said...

...except when they almost choked in front of a National audience last night. Cincy has looked good a lot. But I've got serious doubts about them when the pressure is on.

Have you watched Georgia Tech's offense? I don't know if anyone can stop it. Talk about impressive consistently

mattdabbs said...

Alabama #1 after 3 unimpressive games in a row? Let's look at the last three games

LSU#9:
Beat an unimpressive LSU by 9

Tennessee - unranked:
McElroy had 0 TD's against TN with 120 yards passing, won by blocking field goals. 0 total TD's against TN, all field goals to win by 2 against an unranked team.

South Carolina#22:
No passing TD's, McElroy 92 yards passing? One defensive TD. Ingram did put up a good game there, no denying it.

I guess I am having a hard time seeing such a complete team. I know I am biased but this all seems pretty weak considering only LSU really had a shot and it was still pretty weak. I am not sure how that is more convincing than TX or FL, although I am sure you can offer up some reasons why I am mistaken ;)

III said...

If LSU is so unimpressive, how come the mighty Gators only managed 13 points against them?

Alabama is a complete team because they have superior athletes across the board that can dominate an opponent in all phases of the game. But they haven't played a complete game yet. Case in point: yesterday, 'Bama out-gained LSU in total yards 452 to 253. Now, if you'd told me that was the spread before the game, I would've told you we beat the Tigers by 3 touchdowns. But because of inopportune mistakes (an incomplete pass here, a penalty there), it turned out to be just a 9 point victory. Which, let me add, covered the spread.

I'm not gonna deny that Alabama slumped in mid-October. And I give credit to Tennessee & South Carolina for playing good games against us as well. Jonathan Crompton, for instance, isn't the same player now that he was back in September. And we'll see how well those Gators do up at Carolina this Saturday. Tell Urban Meyer not to forget to pack his offense when they head up there. :)

III said...

Furthermore, how in the world can you make the case that LSU is unimpressive??

Before they played the Gators, they were arguably playing their worst football of the season. Two weeks before UF, Mississippi State had the ball literally a yard away from scoring the winning touchdown. Then the week before UF, LSU needed a phantom flag on Georgia to get by the Bulldogs (who are pretty awful this year).

Florida beat that team by 10 points -- 7 of those points via cheating, when Riley Cooper grabbed a fistful of Bengal Tiger jersey to get open for his TD catch.

But then, after a bye week, LSU beat Auburn by 3 touchdowns. And then they beat Tulane by 6 touchdowns. So they rode into Tuscaloosa with all the momentum in the world.

And Alabama beat that team by 9 points.

So... I don't see how you can possibly defend that claim about LSU being unimpressive. If anything, the argument hurts Florida more than it does Alabama. Who, then, has Florida played this season that is any good at all??? At least Alabama also went & beat up on Virginia Tech.

IMO, that claim is a total non sequitur.

mattdabbs said...

SEC championship will tell all. All teams have their weak games here and there. You just have to hope they don't land on the wrong week. Hasn't happened yet for Alabama or UF. Nice thing is, they are going head to head in a couple of weeks which will be proof enough of who deserves a shot at the national championship.

I guess I just stumbled over all your praise when they averaged 100 yards a game passing with 0 passing TD's over two pretty weak teams. I don't see Texas or UF doing that, unless I am missing something.

III said...

That is the great thing about it. It will get settled on the field. I'm very much looking forward to it.

Here's some games you must have missed this year:

Tim Tebow...

vs. Tennessee
115 yards passing, 0 TD's, 1 INT

vs. Kentucky
103 yards passing, 1 TD

vs. LSU
134 yards passing, 1 (questionable) TD

vs. Mississippi State
127 yards passing, 0 TD's, 2 INT's (both returned for touchdowns)

Colt McCoy

vs. Texas Tech
205 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT's

vs. Oklahoma
127 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT

---

The notion that Alabama can't pass -- or that other teams are invincible because of their QB's -- is a myth. Bama's been slumping. They've had injuries. But McElroy just got done throwing for 276 yards on one of the best defenses in the country, and people are acting like he's some kind of chump. He can get it done. He just got Julio back healthy. He's never lost a football game in HS or college. So he must be doing something right, no?

I look forward to next month :)

David Johnson said...

Where does Houston rank for you?

III said...

Well, I pretty much did everything I could to keep them out of the 12 this week. So that should tell you about what you need to know. I think that the top half of the SEC would beat them regularly. So, despite their record, it's hard for me to put them up there.

When you need a series of miracles to beat a 4-4 Tulsa team, I'm gonna say you're not one of the top 12 teams in the country.

mattdabbs said...

Series of miracles to beat a 4-4 team to keep them out of the top 12? Sounds familiar only the 4-4 team was 3-3. Instead of being out of the top 12 for such a poor performance they are ranked #1 instead? ;)

You know I am just poking you. Good points on the passing stats for Tebow. Thanks for the reminder.

III said...

Can you recall Alabama's series of miracles for me? It occurs to me Alabama made their own luck (Terrence Cody dominating his man & swatting a kick out of air) after having experienced a series of incredibly bad breaks (e.g. Mark Ingram being tackled by his shoe strings before he almost made it a 19-3 game, Mark Ingram losing the first ever fumble of his football career, Tennessee recovering an onside kick. And ANYTIME you recover an onside kick that's miraculous. Which is what Houston did to win their game Saturday night). It's not like Tennessee had a 20-yard FG attempt & the kicker shanked it. That would have been luck. That would have been a miraculous break for Alabama.

And listen, I'm not upset at how Alabama's getting dissed everywhere. Doesn't bother me. I think it gives our guys more fire. I respect the heck out of Florida -- I think they're a good football team. I had them ranked 1st here for the last month after their win against LSU, which I noted that I thought was an impressive win (despite the "unsexy" score). I think the Alabama players also respect the heck out of Florida.

What interests me is how Florida thinks about Alabama. And I sure hope they think about the Tide the same way you do. (g) And don't take them seriously. That would give me great delight to see the Gators waltz into the Georgia Dome with that attitude.

I just think Alabama is the better football team. And, having exhaustively stated my case here, you can see it's more than just fanhood.

DP said...

I agree with you, Philip, about my Tigers! I don't know how anyone could say LSU's performance was unimpressive against Alabama. We've got a defense that's getting better and better every week. Offense is young, but there are some great skill players like Charles Scott (well, not so much anymore), Keiland Williams, Brandon Lafell and Terrence Tolliver. The D managed to hold St. Timmy and Urban "plank-in-my-eye" Meyer to 13 points. They beat Washington soundly, who then crushed USC. Sure, Alabama won, but had the refs made the right call on the Peterson interception, who knows what could have happened.

Having said all this, not every SEC game is going to be a game of sheer dominance like how LSU dominated Auburn. For LSU to hold Alabama close up to the end says a lot about their team. The better team won in the end, but I'd hardly say LSU turned in an unimpressive performance.