Monday, December 08, 2008

Monday 12/08 A.M. Quickie:
BCS, Giants, Steelers, Cards, Hot Stove

Did the BCS get it right? Hmm: Would you settle for "right-ish?"

That concept leads today's SN column and I think it sums up the Florida-Oklahoma outcome.

Most fans -- outside of Texas, USC, Texas Tech, Penn State, Alabama -- will be pretty satisfied with the result: Top "name" teams from the two "power" conferences with telegenic offenses and Heisman star-appeal at QB.

What will likely drive Texas fans most crazy is how quickly the rest of the country moves on, settled into the reality of Florida-Oklahoma. (Well, UT fans will go crazier if -- perhaps when -- Florida rolls over OU.)

The column has my one-line instant reactions about each of the BCS bowls. They're OK, although it would have been fun to see Texas matched up with Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. But if the BCS overlords want clarity, that wouldn't have provided anything but more doubt.

Meanwhile, it's time to settle in for the final 3 games of the NFL season. The top of the NFC is still clearly the Giants (or maybe not-so-clearly anymore). The Cards are an amazing story. And I think the Eagles will win the NFC... IF they even make the playoffs, which is no gimme at all.

With the Giants and Cowboys' struggles, the top of the NFL seems to be in the AFC: Tennessee and Pittsburgh -- defense wins championships. (Remember that, Oklahoma fans.) The AFC East is a hilarious mess. Pick your poison: The loathed Pats? The loathed Favre? Or the lovable worst-to-first Dolphins? And watch that game next week with the Steelers at Baltimore.

College Hoops: I think I have to try to get to see Stephen Curry at the Garden tomorrow night. He's one of those players you really want to see play in person -- or say you saw in person. Particularly coming off his 44-point binge over the weekend vs. NC State.

Meanwhile: With wins over UCLA and Duke, it's hard not to say that Michigan is on the up-and-up. But I'm drawn to the notion that Duke ain't that great. Certainly not "Final Four" great. Probably not even "Sweet 16" great, if the past few seasons are any indication. They remind me a lot of Florida right now: Woefully undersized. That's a hallmark of Coach K-coached teams: He just doesn't recruit, develop or produce great big men.

(Don't say Elton Brand or Carlos Boozer -- both came to Duke fairly fully baked. Credit Coach K for recruiting them, but both leaving early says a lot about how much they felt he and his staff of ex-guards -- Collins, Henderson, Wojo -- could develop them. Since those guys? It's grim. Please don't say "Josh McRoberts" or "Shav Randolph" -- both turned out to be either (a) terrible or (b) painfully undercoached. Either way, it's pretty damning. UPDATE: I guess Sheldon Williams counts. Meh: My theory has been obliterated by those pesky massive exceptions -- still: doesn't it FEEL like Coach K can't develop big men? I digress...)

Hey, let's hope for some fun hot stove action this week in Vegas. How about Jermaine Dye for Homer Bailey?

Complete SN column here. More later -- last night, I put together what is probably going to be my coda about the BCS for this season. I'll obviously keep writing about the match-ups and title game, etc., but it's time to let go of frustration at the BCS system...unless, as I write, you're willing to spread the blame where it REALLY belongs. Check back at noon ET for that.

-- D.S.


Jeff Puckett said...

Lest we forget, Boozer was the 3rd best player on that team (Battier and Jay Williams) and was either underutilized or underachieved compared to his NBA career. Probably a little of both since Coach K is so enamored with defense and the 3 pointer. You have to wonder why he wasn't used more on that team sometimes.

hskr dave said...

Not that I won't disagree with what Coach K has done or not done developing big men, but I would put more on the NBA/Money/Agents/Family/Friends/Media as reasons stars leave any program than what they think the coach can do to develop them for the NBA.

TheScrobocop said...

I think that you might be overstating the case a bit when you talk about the Gators' resume. According to the final BCS standings, Oklahoma beat the the number 7,11,12,13,21,30, and 34th teams in the FBS, with the loss coming on a neutral field to number 3. Florida beat 4, 15, 26, and 40, and lost to number 25 at home. This isn't to say that I think Florida is a bad team. The win over Alabama was very impressive. But I think predicting a Florida blowout doesn't necessarily reflect all the available information.