Around the NCAA

4 10 2010

SEC Sucks!

If Alabama runs through the SEC undefeated, how can you consider that the best conference in the land? There’s no way they would make it through the Pac-12 gauntlet unscathed. I have to give LSU props for scheduling like they’re a member of the Pac-12 by playing two BCS opponents in non-conference.

It also helps that Les Miles is the luckiest coach on the planet. Check out the end of the LSU game today. When they won the championship in 2007 they weren’t even the best team in the country and they got an invite to play in the BCS championship, but on their way they had an amazing game winning play against Auburn.

Here’s how the conference stacks up against the Pac-12 and by my account we have a 6-3 edge over them with three ties. This season Oregon smashed Tennessee and Colorado beat Georgia today! Even if we give Alabama the advantage over Oregon, that’s still 5-3 in favor of the Pac.

SEC Pac-12
Alabama Oregon
LSU < Arizona
Auburn < Utah
Florida Stanford
Arkansas > USC
South Carolina > UCLA
Ole Miss < Cal
Miss State < Oregon State
Kentucky < Washington
Tennessee < Arizona State
Vanderbilt Colorado
Georgia > WSU

Go Big Blue!

Rich Rodriguez is back and he has his best player since Pat White at West Virginia. Although Michigan barely escaped Indiana yesterday, Denard “Shoelace” Robinson is the most exciting player in the country and the last piece that the read-option offense has lacked. The defense will cost them a couple of games this year, but their offense can score at anytime with their big play potential. If the Heisman Trophy was awarded today he would win it. The award is supposed to go to the best player in the country, not the best player on the best team. Marc Ingram is a great player, but Alabama still would have gone undefeated without him. Toby Gerhart was the reason that Stanford was even competitive.

Hurt Locker

Last night we saw exactly why Jake locker was touted as the number one quarterback on Mel Kiper’s draft board. He led the Huskies to their first road win since 2007, dissected Monte Kiffin’s defense all night long, and finished with 410 yards of offense. All of Locker’s weapons (Chris Polk, Devin Aguilar, and Jermaine Kearse) dropped perfect passes in critical situations, but the strong-armed quarterback shook it off and continued to make plays. Whenever Sarkisian rolled Locker out of the pocket he looked unstoppable and those flashes of brilliance need to continue if the Huskies want to make a bowl game this year. The 4th and 10 play on the game winning drive was a thing of beauty and you can see other highlights here.

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NASPAQ – Pac-12 Stock Report : Week 2

15 09 2010

The defensive side of the NASPAQ is starting to shape up after some incredible performances this week. The Leader of the Pac – Defensive MVP this week goes to Mike Mohamed (MIKE) of the Cal Bears for his 14 tackles and an interception returned 41 yards for a touchdown. Mohamed is third in the conference in tackles with 21. He is the leader of the #1 total defense in the country with Cal yielding only 160 yards per game. Our bullish trend this week is wide receiver of the Washington Huskies – Jermaine Kearse, after putting on a show of 9 receptions and 179 yardsin their victory over Syracuse. His stock is up 30% and he’s tied for the highest wide receiver stock with Juron Criner of Arizona at $65 per share.

Defensive Players

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Akeem Ayers UCLA AYER ↑ 5 6% $85
Mason Foster UW FOST ↑ 5 7% $80
Mike Mohamed Cal MIKE ↑ 10 14% $80
Rahim Moore UCLA MOOR ↑ 5 7% $80
Jurrell Casey USC CASE ↑ 5 7% $80
Tony Dye UCLA DYE ↑ 5 10% $55
Malcolm Smith USC SMIT ↑ 5 10% $55
Richard Sherman Stanford SHER ↑ 5 12% $45

IPO’s

We’ve had some IPO’s pop up on our radar starting with Cliff Harris (CLIF) of the Oregon Ducks. We don’t know how we missed his two touchdowns on special teams last week (Punt 1, Punt 2), but he caught our analysts attention when he pick-sixed Tennessee’s Matt Simms. His stock opens up at $25 and we see this as a bull market if you invest early enough.


Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Darron Thomas Oregon DARR $25
Devin Aguilar Washington AGUI $25
Robert Woods USC WOOD $15
Marquess Wilson WSU MARQ $15
Michael Thomas Stanford THOM $15
TJ McDonald USC TJMC $25
Cliff Harris Oregon CLIF $25

Running Backs

The Oregon Ducks also had some of the top offensive highlights this week from their backfield. LaMichael James (LMJ) is back on the NASPAQ after his suspension and saw a 5% rise in his stock to $105. Kenjon Barner didn’t replicate his four touchdowns of week one, but he had an 80 yard punt return for a touchdown. The Ducks quarterback – Darron Thomas (DARR) IPO’d at $25 dollars this week after managing his first road game like a veteran.

Team Symbol Δ Δ % Total
JacQuizz Rodgers OSU QUIZ 4% $120
LaMichael James Oregon LMJ ↑ 5 5% $105
Chris Polk UW POLK ↑ 5 6% $80
Shane Vereen Cal VARE $75
Kenjon Barner Oregon BARN ↑ 5 10% $55
Nic Grigsby Arizona GRIG ↑ 10 28% $45
Cameron Marshall ASU MRSH ↓ 5 20% $20
Marc Tyler USC MARC ↓ 5 20% $20

From our positional markets there were a couple outstanding defensive performances this week, most notably from Cal and Stanford. Their defenses were aggressive and applied pressure on the opponent’s quarterbacks to force turnovers. Both of their defensive units saw some coaching turnover and replaced their defensive coordinators with experienced NFL coaches. Cal is currently #1 in total defense nationally, while Stanford is #6, but the Bears will face the #1 total offense in the country against Nevada this week so we see this as a bear market that has topped out.

Defensive Market

Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Arizona Defense ARID ↑ 10 60% $65
Cal Defense CALD ↑ 10 20 $60
Colorado Defense COLD ↓ 10 25% $30
Oregon Defense ORED ↑ 10 9% $125
Oregon State Defense OSUD $40
USC Defense USCD ↑ 10 20% $60
UCLA Defense UCLD ↓ 20 33% $40
Stanford Defense STAD ↑ 15 42% $50
Utah Defense UTAD ↑ 5 8% $65
UW Defense UWD ↑ 5 12% $45

Quarterbacks

Week 2 wasn’t as kind to our quarterbacks as the first week with Matt Barkley, Andrew Luck, and Kevin Riley looking like they needed to shake off some rust. Jordan Wynn sat out this week with an injury, but the Utes were able to win with their backup. Tyler Hansen was sacked six times and committed four turnovers in the first Pac-12 game between Colorado and Cal. Jake Locker finally had some success and received an 11% bump in his stock to get back to triple digit stock prices.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Nick Foles Arizona FOLE ↑ 5 4% $125
Andrew Luck Stanford LUCK ↓10 7% $125
Matt Barkley USC BARK ↑ 5 4% $120
Jake Locker UW LOCK ↑ 10 11% $100
Kevin Riley Cal RILE ↑ 5 6% $85
Jordan Wynn Utah WYNN $55
Tyler Hansen Col HANS ↓10 25% $30
Kevin Prince UCLA PRNC ↓ 5 25% $15
Ryan Katz OSU KATZ $10

Wide Receivers

Robert Woods (WOOD) is the newest wide receiver on the NASPAQ, and even though he hasn’t found pay dirt he’s been consistent and at times looks like Barkley’s first target. Jermaine Kearse (JERM) was the top wide receiver of the weekend with 9 catches for 179 yards and three touchdowns.

Team Symbol Δ Δ% Total
Juron Criner Arizona CRIN $65
Jermaine Kearse UW JERM ↑ 15 30% $65
James Rodgers OSU JROD $55
Ronald Johnson USC ROJO $50
Marvin Jones Cal MARV ↑ 5 14% $40
Keenan Allen Cal KEEN ↑ 5 20% $30
Doug Baldwin Stanford BALD $25
DeVonte Christopher Utah DEVO ↓ 5 20% $20
David Ausberry USC BERY ↓10 40% $15


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Pac-12 – Week 2 Players of the Week

14 09 2010

Another glorious Saturday of college football and the Pac-12 taking care of business. Oregon gave Tennessee a Pac-12 shocker that was felt through SEC country. UCLA looked lost offensively, USC can’t seem to play a complete game yet, and U-Dubb quarterback Jake Locker looked like the guy that received some Heisman hype before the season.

Jake Locker played an efficient game and even more importantly led his team to victory. The Huskies were down 10-zip before Locker started finding his rhythm and completed 22 of 33 passes for 289 yards and four touchdowns. His favorite target was Jermaine Kearse who was the recipient of 9 passes for 179 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Another player that I was extremely impressed with was Darron Thomas of the Oregon Ducks. His 17 of 32 passing for 202 yards won’t blow you away, but he was in a hostile environment and didn’t turn the ball over. He had some help out of his backfield with LaMichael James stealing the spotlight back from Kenjon Barner by running for 134 yards on 16 carries. His 72 yard run not only gave Oregon the lead, it was probably the best play of the weekend.

There were a couple other players that stepped up big time this weekend, but I prefer the two defensive performances from the Bay Area teams. Cal harassed Colorado quarterback Tyler Hansen to the tune of six sacks and 3 interceptions, and a fumble. The defense scored two touchdowns with one coming on an 82 yard fumble recovery that popped right into the hands of senior corner back Darian Hagan. When I highlighted a strength of the Cal Bears in the off-season I mentioned Mike Mohamed and Mychal Kendricks, the two combined for 25 tackles, an interception returned for a touchdown, a fumble recovery, 3 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks.

Stanford’s defense was even more impressive by posting a shutout of the UCLA Bruins in the Rose Bowl. Playing on the road in the Pac-12 is difficult, but shutouts are more rare than a perfect game in baseball. The Cardinal held the Bruins to only 233 yards of offense and Michael Thomas spearheaded the effort by collecting five tackles, forcing two fumbles and returning one of them for a 21 yard touchdown to blow the game open to 28-0. My research team told me that it was nearly impossible to find a picture of a good looking girl wearing Stanford apparel, but here is the one bright spot for them.

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Pac-12 Week 2 Predictions

10 09 2010

Started off pretty well last week with a 9-1 record, but Jake Locker let me down as the Huskies were held scoreless in the second half against BYU. Lots of good games this week and one conference game with Stanford traveling to UCLA.

Colorado at Cal: The newest member of the Pac-12 should receive some rookie hazing as Cal looks to impose its offensive firepower at the skill positions. Look for Shane Vereen to run in the 150 yard range and the Kevin Riley to Keenan Allen connection to continue. Our special guest from The Office – Dwight Schrute, picked the score this week. Bears 34 – Buffs 23

Stanford at UCLA: The new UCLA pistol offense looked like a SuperSoaker last week and Stanford has a QB with a cannon for an arm. Andrew Luck will be facing the top secondary in the conference, but his offensive line should give him plenty of time against a young Bruin front seven. Stanford 31 – UCLA 23
Virginia at USC: Lane Kiffin has seen better tackling in Pee Wee football and he sent a message to his players this week. Look for them to come out more aggressive and wrapping up when they tackle. The NASPAQ report shows that the USC defense hit the market bottom this week and many of our analysts see it as a bull market moving forward. USC 45 – Virginia 14
North Arizona at Arizona State: The Sun Devils are on the cupcake diet and facing their second FCS team this season. Steven Threet benefited from a lot of explosive plays out of Cameron Marshall against Portland State. Look for them to have some longer drives this week. Sun Devils 34 – Lumberjacks 10

Oregon at Tennessee: Darron Thomas’ first road game with 105,000 orange clad cousins cheering against him will be a lot easier with the James and Barner in the backfield. Justin Wilcox out-schemed Chip Kelly last year when he was Boise State’s Defensive Coordinator, but the young Tennessee defense won’t have the same discipline of the Broncos. Ducks 34 – Vols 20

The Citadel at Arizona: The Citadel forced four interceptions last week against a team I’ve never heard of (Chowan), but they didn’t have to face Nick Foles. Arizona will be looking to fine tune their offense before Iowa visits next week, Foles throws for 300 yards and Criner gets another TD. The Arizona University 55 – The Citadel 7

Syracuse at Washington: Nobody needs a strong performance this week more than Jake Locker. The Huskies played much better at home last year and expect that trend to continue. Chris Polk should eclipse the 100 yard mark for the first time this season as the Huskies cruise. Dawgs 31 – Orange 20

UNLV at Utah: I loved watching this Utah team knock off Pitt last week in overtime and without tooting my horn too much, my prediction was spot on. The NASPAQ shows that Jordan Wynn stock is growing strong. Utes 41 – UNLV 17

Montana State at Washington State: The Cougars are about to get their first win of the season as Jeff Tuel throws for 300 yards in this game. Cougars 34 – Bobcats 20


2010 Prediction record 9-1

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Best Pac-10 Non-Conference Games

19 08 2010

Week 1  – September 4th

UCLA @ Kansas State

Kansas State is the first of three Midwest teams that UCLA faces this year and the weakest team before they begin Pac-10 play. Will Kevin Prince be healthy by the time the season starts or will junior college transfer Darius Bell take the pistol offense to desert eagle status? Can the UCLA defense contain Daniel Thomas without Brian Price and Reggie Carter?

Oregon St vs TCU

This should be one of the top non-conference games of the year, and TCU returns 16 starters from a team that posted a 12-1 record in 2009, but they’ll be without their two best defensive  players who were drafted into the NFL- Daryl Washington and Jerry Hughes. Oregon State’s two best players (JacQuizz & James Rodgers) hail from Texas, but they bring with them a contrarian version of  “everything is bigger in Texas” by packing huge punches in small packages.   Mike Riley needs to break his streak of slow starts and a victory against TCU in Cowboy Stadium would likely bump them into the top 15 rankings.

Washington @ BYU

Jake Heaps was the top prep quarterback last year and hailed from Sammamish, WA, but he spurned the local team for an opportunity have polygamist relationships while he’s in college. The Dawgs didn’t win a road game last year and Jake Locker needs a victory to keep his name among the Heisman candidates.


Week 2 – September 11th

Colorado @ Cal

Cal would like to welcome Colorado to the conference with some rookie hazing, and I think the loser’s coach should have his head shaved by the victor. Hawkins probably won’t agree to it, because Tedford is already balding, but maybe he could agree to a tattoo bet in its stead.

Oregon @ Tennessee

Kudos to the Volunteers for scheduling their third Pac-10 team in the last four years, but Oregon is bringing a high powered offense against a young Vols defense. Chip Kelly lost his big non-conference game last year against Boise State and the defensive coordinator for the Broncos was none other than the current Tennessee Volunteers DC Justin Wilcox.

Week 3 – September 18th

Houston @ UCLA

Case Keenum is likely a Heisman candidate and the Houston Cougars were the number one offense in the country last year averaging 42.2 points per game. They’ll be facing arguably the top secondary in the Pac-10 led by UCLA’s All-American Rahim Moore.

Iowa @ Arizona

Nick Foles took over midway through the Iowa game last year and nearly stole the game from the Hawkeyes. This year he’ll be playing from the start and will be looking for payback. Their girls look like they will fit in just fine in the desert.

ASU @ Wisconsin

Wisconsin is probably the most overrated team that starts off the season in the top 10, but they are tough at home because they make their opponents eat a half dozen bratwursts for breakfast the day of the game. John Clay ran for 1,517 yards and 18TD’s last year, but Vontaze Burfict is the most dangerous defensive player in the conference and will be chasing him all over the field. Wisconsin also boasts an efficient passing game with Scott Tolzien throwing for 2,705 yards and an impressive 64% completion percentage last year. His 11TD’s to 16INT’s ratio proves that he’s still vulnerable if you can apply some pressure on him.

Nebraska @ Washington

The Cornhuskers welcome back 16 starters and a couple defensive players that will be playing in the NFL next year, most notably Prince Amukamara who’s rated #3 on the ESPN draft board . Washington also sports one of their own on the draft board with the number one overall player in Jake Locker. Nebraska will start the season in the top 10, but at times last year their offense was about as exciting as watching paint dry so look for the Huskies to try to get into a shootout.

Week 4 – September 25th

UCLA @ Texas

The Texas Longhorns were scared of the competition they would face in the Pac-16 so they backed out at the last minute, but the Bruins are just the team make them regret that decision. Rick Neuheisel will be taking a page out of Rocky Balboa’s strategy by taking punches & points on the chin with hopes that it will wear Texas down. Side bets will be taken for which team wins the battle of the coeds? Longhorns bring more blondes, but UCLA has blondes, brunettes, and some of the hottest Asian women you’ll ever see.

Oregon State @ Boise State

This game should feature some of the worst jerseys in the NCAA and it will be played on the ugliest turf in the country. If Oregon State comes out of their non-conference undefeated, they’ll be in the top five in the country.

Stanford @ Notre Dame

Notre Dame’s only chance will be Touchdown Jesus strapping up his cleats and playing for the Fighting Irish secondary, because Andrew Luck is going to spank them harder than their catholic priests ever have.

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Pac-10 vs SEC Non-Conference Schedule

27 07 2010

As everyone on the west coast already knows, the paradox of the SEC being the top conference in the country should be questioned when you take a look at their non-conference schedules. Even without looking at the other conferences, I would be willing to bet that the SEC would be at the bottom when it comes to strength of schedule and comparing them to the Pac-12 is not even fair, but here’s the information in an excel chart.

*Rankings were determined from espn.com and nationalchamps.net

**Two different SEC opponents were ranked 25th in each poll, but unranked in the other.

Looking at the Pac-10 it looks like they typically follow a format to include one A game (BCS conference team), B game (mid-major), and C game (easy win). There are exceptions to this rule, but even the worst schedule in the Pac-10, which I would give to Arizona State for playing two FCS schools – has the Sun Devils traveling across the country to play a top ten team on the road.

In contrast, the SEC’s 48 non-conference games includes the Sisters of the South and a bunch of teams from Louisiana that they want to beat up on (Louisiana Lafayette – twice, Louisiana Monroe – three times, and Tulane). I’ve been able to deduce that either the Bayou is a recruiting hotbed, or the SEC is recruiting these teams to join the conference when they expand. How would fans react if the Miami Heat were playing 27 games a year against the D-league, or the Yankees playing 54 games a year against Triple-A teams?

Instead of playing four non-conference games, the SEC should borrow a page from the Pac-10 and do a full nine game conference schedule. The Leader of the Pac should reveal to the rest of the country what the standard is when it comes to schedules and the rest of the country is looking West to see where the standard is set. Even the two teams that are joining the conference next year are already playing strong schedules. I should also note here that the Utah Utes are the last team to beat the defending national champion Alabama Menstruating Periods also known as the Crimson Tide.

It’s not all negative when it comes to the SEC schedules with some good traditional rivalries outside of conference play in Florida-FSU, Georgia-Georgia Tech, and Clemson-South Carolina. The Tennessee Volunteers also deserved to be praised for their fortitude in regards to scheduling perennial powerhouses every season. They play against a top ten Oregon team this year, and have had UCLA, Cal, Miami, and Notre Dame on the schedule in the decade.

Top schedules in the Pac-10

Oregon State – @ #6 TCU, Louisville, @ #3 Boise State

UCLA – @ Kansas State, Houston, @ #4 Texas

Washington – @ BYU, Syracuse, #7 Nebraska

Top schedules in the SEC

LSU – #21 North Carolina, #25West Virginia, McNeese St, Louisiana Monroe

Tennessee – Tennessee Martin, #10 Oregon, UAB, @ Memphis

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