Monday, November 28, 2011

11/28 (Urban Meyer) Quickie

We'll get to the NFL, but first, a quick thought on Urban Meyer:

I'm an unabashed Meyer fan. I can hate Ohio State and like (if not root) for Meyer, not unlike I can hate the Patriots and like (if not root) for Bill Belichick.

As a Florida fan, I have no problem with him leaving a year ago for "health problems," only to turn around and take the Ohio State job not a year later. I can't begrudge him.

I think he will win big, if only because: it's a huge program with tons of resources; it's a huge recruiting base; and the Big Ten is dramatically easier than the SEC.

Here is what I see for Meyer: He will win Big Ten title after Big Ten title. He will not be able to beat the SEC's best, should he get the Buckeyes into the national title game.

In the end, that's the sneaky arbitrage for Meyer: Gaming a BCS system that would rank an unbeaten Ohio State ahead of a one-loss SEC champ -- ahead of everyone, really.

I'm not sure Meyer will be able to ever put together a collection of talent (and coaching) like he had with his 2008 national champs in Florida. The brawn of Bama or LSU will still stymie him.

But Ohio State merely needs him to be great, not legendary. And do it in the milder Big Ten, not the off-the-charts competitive SEC.


*Tim Tebow: Not sure when the haters and snickering masses will finally ease up. If the Broncos didn't win another game this season, Tebow still outperforms the expectations by about 200%. Now: What if they go 4-1 down the stretch (which will include a thrashing on Sunday Night Football against the Patriots) and make the playoffs? That's my own expectation for him/them.

*Stevie Johnson: The TD celebration was in poor taste -- I'm not sure it commands a hailstorm of criticism. (Conduct penalty or not, if the kicker doesn't shank the subsequent kickoff, the harm of his celebration is neutered.) Frankly, I'm more offended that he dropped the easy would-be game-saving TD late in the game. If he's apologizing, it should be for that.

*Playoff Watch: The Texans are in a good enough position to make the playoffs without a QB -- they'll get drummed out in the first weekend. But that's OK: First of all, making the playoffs at all is a huge deal for the team. Second, no one expects them to get out of the Wild Card Weekend anyway. (The Bears, meanwhile, might run out of gas just short of the playoffs. I'm not as down on Caleb Hanie as some -- I think he can get them there. But once in the playoffs, they're cooked.)

-- D.S.

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