The Blog of Tommy Trojan

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Week Three Rankings

Got some time to update the rankings so here we go...only ten though.

1. Ohio State
Biggest win of the year (Texas) and best offense in the nation (and one of the top 10 defenses surprisingly). Two possible Heismans doesn't hurt either.

2. USC
Best team in '06 (don't bother arguing) that reloaded with three consecutive #1 recruiting classes. A strong win over Nebraska while not even playing their best ball. DJ also showed why he is the #1 wideout in the nation. Is Booty not the most attractive dark horse Heisman choice - 6TDs-0INTs!

3. Auburn
Is probably 2nd in a lot of other rankings. Escaped against LSU with its undefeated hopes still alive, but barely. Kenny Irons' Heisman season is still alive and if Auburn goes all the way, Irons has to get it.

4. LSU
Sure they lost, but who cares. They should have beat the #3 team. They have a legit defense and a decent enough offense that it should win tough games if JaMarcus Russell can hit some more open receivers.

5. Michigan
They weren't too impressive in the first two games, but were EXTREMELY impressive in the third. I was never on ND's bandwagon (I thought they had a questionable defense and weak running game), but ND was a solid team and Michigan went into their home and kicked their ass. Their matchup against Ohio St. should be great, until kickoff at least.

6. West Virginia
I am just not convinced they are that good, but they have played well and have an easy, easy schedule, which should guarantee this team a trip to the BCS and perhaps the national championship. Slaton is leading Heisman candidate as of this moment, but I don't think WV will get enough credit to get him the award.

7. Texas
Still a good team with a pretty easy schedule. All their success will be based on the performance of their young QB. The longhorns will probably also take down the Red River Shootout this year.

8. Florida
Just got by a spotty Tennessee team, which is sometimes really good and sometimes really bad. Florida could take the SEC, but its unlikely, I just don't think Chris Leak has it in him to win it all.

9. Oregon
I hate to put them here, especially because they haven't won any games in a convincing fashion. They had to get lucky against both Fresno State and Oklahoma and could easily be 1-2. Jonathan Stewart is a beast, WILL be a Heisman before he leaves (you see the campaign Oregon brought out for Harrington a couple years ago?).

10. Notre Dame
ND isn't bad, but they're not great, expect them to drop outta the top 10-15 if their defense doesn't get its act together. Brady Quinn is also throwing away an easy Heisman with 3 INTs vs. Michigan.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Early Week 3 Reflections

I missed updating last week, but if USC is off, then usually I will be too.

Week 2 did not have too many crazy upsets. I thought Ohio St. did exactly what they were expected to, which was beat Texas. Ohio St. continued it this week by whooping on Cincinnati.

In today's news, Miami is now the new Nebraska...and by that I mean, former dominating team that is no longer in the top 25, facing future questions regarding the abilities of the coaching staff and likley to have a two year lull before returning to any resemblance of prominence. Seriously. Miami couldn't keep up with Louisville, who I truly believe is not a BCS-caliber team. However, this win over Miami will probably be used to vault Louisville higher and higher into the BCS spotlight. Miami is not a solid team and their future doesn't seem to be much brighter.

Brady Quinn fell a bunch spots in the Heisman race, in fact he might need a parachute he fell so far. Michigan has not been very dominating so far this year, yet they looked absolutely great today. He will have to be MUCH better to pull it out (and for ND to win). Luckily he is on the most popular and historic team in football history, which gives him more leeway in making mistakes.

So how far is ND going to fall now? First they fall after barely beating GA Tech, then they go to #2 because they destroyed a decent Penn State team. I can't wait to see how much the ND-exaggeration factor pulls ND down.

I think Kenny Irons stays atop my Heisman ballot. His team won a hard fought game against a very good team, especially defensively, and he had a decent game. If Auburn wins out, which I believe this Auburn team can, he is going to get the award, no two ways about it. Top player on potentially the top team. ND losing and Quinn throwing 3 INTs helps everyone else in the race a lot. Steve Slaton is likely Irons' other biggest obstacle - just wait for Auburn QB Brian Cox to "Tonya Harding" Steve Slaton and this thing is over.

On another Heisman note, Jonathan Stewart is good. Just thought I'd let you know in case you missed him. Don't worry, you will hear a lot about him and very soon because....he good, damn good.

I cannot believe Cal scheduled Portland State. Geez. I don't get teams that schedule these games. I just cannot respect that, it's not even close, especially for Cal. If it was Stanford, then ok, because they suck. But Cal is supposed to be a top 20 team, they shouldn't be playing teams that aren't even in the top 100. By the way, did Cal beat Portland St? Well, you never know with Cal.

Anyways, USC is coming up, FIGHT ON!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Week One Rankings

A whole lot of business going on this week, so here is my week one rankings:

1. OSU
Played a weak first week opponent, but still the top team to beat. We will see if they or Texas is for real after this week.

2. USC
One of the few teams to play a real team in the first week. Played them in the other team's backyard and kicked the crap out of them. Schedule also favors USC which is one reason to rank them so high. I'm happy about the week off before Nebraska.

3. West Virginia
The Mountaineers had a great first week and play in a weak conference so they get the three spot here. Lousiville losing RB Michael Bush for the year also helps a lot.

4. Auburn
I didn't originally think they should be ranked so high, but after watching them take Wazzou apart...RB Kenny Irons looked great and could easily walk away with the Heisman this year.

5. Notre Dame
Didn't look great against GA Tech. QB Brady Quinn didn't have any TDs, but got the win, which at this point is the most important thing. I think if the ND offense can't improve, they will not win as many games as people think, the Yellowjackets are exactly the toughest defense around.

6. Texas
I didn't think Texas would be as good as people think, but they did what they had to do, which is destroy North Texas in the opener. I think it was a good way to introduce QB Colt McCoy, but the upcoming game against OSU is the real way to measure how good he really is. I think OSU takes it because of the veteran QB at OSU and the inexperience at QB for Texas. However, Texas should not drop out of the top 10.

7. FSU
Florida State, even though I can't stand them, looked good in the Orange Bowl tonight. Playing a pretty decent Canes team, FSU played good defense and had just enough offense. If QB Drew Weatherford can keep improving, this team will be a scary team. Don't forget this team took a very solid Penn State the distance last year. I would also like to note that FSU RB Lorenzo Booker was going to come to USC before committing to FSU - I really don't think we missed out too much...

8. Tennessee
Nobody thought the Vols would bring it this year, but they looked very legit against Cal - a very, very suspect team if there ever was one. Cal could show up as a national title contender and then play the next week the way they did at Rocky Top. And I believe the Cal that USC will play is going to be much different than the one Tennessee played. The Vols had the Bears on the run the entire game and Cal made WR Robert Meachum (sp ck) look like Jerry Rice. I'm interested to see how the Vols do once they start conference play.

9. Michigan
The Wolverines are always in the BCS picture. QB Chad Henne and RB Michael Hart are also a potent 1-2 punch. But the Big Blue tend to stumble so don't be surprised to see a solid Iowa team in the top 10 with some solid wins.

10. Oregon/LSU
Both teams did well, won and are still basically under the radar. They are not getting as much heat as some other teams which could help them avoid getting every team's best shot the way USC or Notre Dame or OSU might. Oregon RB Jonathan Stewart and LSU QB JaMarcus Russell are dark horse candidates on my Heisman list. I really like Stewart and would have liked him to come to USC (but he HAD to choose the Ducks) and be the next great USC RB.

Big Losers of Week One:

1. Colorado
How do you lose to I-AA Montana St.?

2. Louisville
Got the win, but lose your #1 RB Michael Bush...FOR THE SEASON! Could be the one thing to win the Heisman for QB Brian Brohm.

3. Oklahoma
Got exposed by an alright UAB team. RB Adrian Peterson did alright, but QB Paul Thompson is going to need a lot of help. I even think Colorado could take them.

4. Cal
I think I said all I needed to up top. Although I would say that bringing an inexperienced QB into a place like Rocky Top is a tough obstacle to overcome. But they should still drop big-time, maybe to the 20-23 area.

USC v. Ar-Kansas

Leinart who? (Offense)

Ok, so I don't think anyone is going to forget Ole Matty Leinart that quick buuuut...John David Booty really made a good attempt at it. Playing in hostile territory against a team that even the "great" Lou Holtz believed would upset USC, Booty had a great first start. 250+ yards passing, 3 touchdowns and no interceptions. Last part was as important as the 3 TDs. Booty proved he could run the offense and distribute the ball. Although, I would have liked to see the running game do a little bit better, but nevertheless, the offense looked very strong in the second half. The first half was a bit scary because we couldn't get the ball in the endzone very well.

Big Number - 5 (Defense)

I'm not talking about Reggie Bush, the most famous #5 to pass through Herritage Hall. No, five is for the number of takeaways. Fumble Felix Jones, the backup RB for Arkansas, did a good job of bumping our giveaway-takeaway ratio with 3 fumbles, especially big ones on their own side of the field. USC continued its history under Coach Pete Carroll of being ballhawks and making big plays of getting the ball on defense. Winning games, especially in tough places, has a lot to do with who protects the ball - one thing USC did great and Arkansas didn't. All the linebackers at USC looked great and were all over the field. I think a lot of teams are going to have a hell of a time strategizing to beat this defense.

Pinkard Out

I'm not sure of anything right now, but maybe someone else can offer some information on how safety Josh Pinkard is doing after getting injured in the Arkansas game. Pinkard is a big part of the USC defense and would be a big loss if he misses the rest of the season...

I'm really interested to hear what other people thought of the game?

I'm Back!

Thomas Trojan has returned to USC and is back with a mean streak! It was a big opening weekend of college football so let's get to work...

Friday, May 12, 2006

Dark Days Ahead...

These are some unusually dark days for Troy right now, something many young Trojans fans have not been used to. I won't go into detail about any of the scandals still rocking USC, instead I will direct you to a place that still seems to put out good news about the Trojans, at least for recruiting.

Friday, April 28, 2006

"When It Rains It Pours"

That's what I've been hearing a lot lately from Trojan fans regarding the recent scandals involving Reggie Bush and Mark Sanchez. I haven't taken the time to write about it here because I have been commenting mostly on other blogs. I will take these scandals one at a time.

Reggie Bush & Co.'s Home

It goes without saying that I hope all the scandals that hit USC are false, but I have to say that I believe that this recent one involving Bush and his family is true. I don't think any less of Reggie Bush, but it does hurt his incredibly positive image that this news has come out. The one thing about this that I cannot stand is that people believe the university and the athletic department should be on top of these issues and know all about them. That idea is plain ridiculous! USC (and all major schools) can barely keep these players in line, which is difficult given that these are still young men. How can they be expected to know what each and every family is doing or make sure they are complying with NCAA rules (which are somewhat ridiculous in and of themselves)? USC cannot possible be expected to take ANY responsibility for things like this other than to make sure everyone knows the rules (which I have heard that USC did let Bush and his family know all the NCAA rules).

Mark Sanchez Arrested

This news is especially devestating to Trojan fans because while Bush is one of the greats to wear Cardinal and Gold, Bush is gone and Sanchez is the future. With Booty's inability to stay healthy, USC could very likely have to turn to Sanchez to run the offense in the upcoming season. But that was all last week's news. Now, Sanchez is arrested, jailed and accused of sexual assault. We can all only hope that this whole thing is untrue, not even taking into consideration the consequences for the team. Sanchez is described as an intelligent and good-natured person, which makes believing these charges very hard. However, it doesn't mean that they are not. One interesting thing I have heard from a lot of people is, if you can't trust a guy like Mark Sanchez, who can you trust? I guess no one, unfortunately.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Interesting Article

Apparently, Pete Carroll is tinkering with the defense and might put in a 3-4 defense. I think that would be a great idea because not only would the defense be more suited to the strengths of the players (USC has mulitple talented LBs), but also because it would allow the defense to do a lot of different things that many college defenses are not doing right now. Nevertheless, read the article, it will be very interesting to see what happens.

Read Here

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Draft Talk

Since spring practice is over and the draft is less than 10 days away, I thought I would give my thoughts on what a few NFL teams should do this draft season.

Well, first I think a few teams could/should make a move on Reggie Bush. I think the Texans want him but they also need a lot of talent at a lot of places so they should definitely be looking to deal. I still think they made a mistake in not trading the 1st pick for John Abraham and the 4th pick (OT D'Brickshaw Ferguson) from the Jets.

The Niners have a ton of picks, including two first rounders, so they have some things to work with. Do they move up to Reggie? They could. RB is not an immediate need for this team compared to other positions. The Niners need a lot of help on defense and along the offensive line and at WR. The Niners should really make a move to take Ferguson, which would mean moving up to at least the 4th pick most likely, possibly even the 2nd pick if the Saints want him there. I don't think the Niners can really afford to take TE Vernon Davis becuase they need some many other things than an athletic TE (which there are actually others in the draft as well, especially Georgia TE Leonard Pope, the dude is 6'7" and can run and catch!).

More to come later....