Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Reporters' Notebooks

Georgia Sports Blog: Alcohol-free family friendly tailgate zones set up by Georgia officials attracted only three tailgates. Thanks to EBSBS.

Dave Dye, Detroit Free Press: Michigan State coach John L. Smith is having a tiff with the Lansing State Journal after the paper ran a section titled "Official fan blowout guide" to preview the narrow victory over Idaho.

Rick Bozich, Louisville Courier-Journal: What's it like to be sitting in the stands and watching your son get injured? Michael Bush Sr. now knows.

Dave Rahme, Syracuse Post-Standard: There is little evidence of improvement at Syracuse, where the offense continues to be awful.

John Hunt, Oregonian: A stadium renovation might have taken the edge off Fresno State fans, but Oregon is still expecting wild and crazy times.

Mike Hlas, Cedar Rapids Gazette: Big Ten teams combined to go 11-0 in Week 1, but were any of the victories over teams of significance? And what about Watson Brown's curious coaching call in Alabama Birmingham's loss at Oklahoma? (subscription, so story is in comments).

1 comment:

dawizofodds said...

THE HLIST

Mike Hlas
Cedar Rapids Gazette

FIRST DOWNS
1. Big Eleven: The Big Ten began its 2006 crusade for college football dominance by sweeping its 11 non-conference games.
The best team that the Big Ten beat? It was, er, Northern Illinois?
Vanderbilt? Akron?
The league scored three wins over Division I-AA teams, six over the Mid-American Conference.
Throw in conquests of Idaho and Vandy, and you still aren’t looking at the most glorious week in league history.
Purdue didn’t instill confidence after downing Indiana State, 60-35.
The I-AA Sycamores were 0-11 last year. They trailed the Boilermakers by just 26-21 at halftime.
‘‘We didn’t win it the way we wanted to win it,’’ Purdue Coach Joe Tiller said, ‘‘but we won.’’ Fair enough. Then you have Michigan State Coach John L. Smith, whose Spartans held off Idaho, 27-17. Smith was asked if the victory was unimpressive.
‘‘No, a win is a good win,’’ he said. ‘‘A real good win.’’ Noted Dave Dye of the Detroit News: There’s no truth to the rumor that Smith called Mike Krzyzewski to congratulate him on the bronze medal at the world basketball championship.


2. Big Sky-High: I-AA Montana State provided the shocker of the weekend with its 19-10 win at Colorado.
‘‘At no point did I think we couldn’t win this football game because of our talent level and coaching expertise,’’ MSU Coach Mike Kramer said.
The result wasn’t what Colorado expected when it hired Dan Hawkins to be its new coach last December.
Saturday’s loss, Hawkins said, is ‘‘only devastating if people make it devastating.’’ The Hlist doesn’t call it devastating. Horrifying, for sure. Gruesome, absolutely. But devastating? Nahhh.


3. Howlin’ Wolfe: Northern Illinois took its lumps in its 35-12 loss at Ohio State, but 5-foot-7, 177-pound running back Garrett Wolfe stood tall for the Huskies with 171 yards on 26 carries and five receptions for 114 yards.
‘‘It doesn’t do anything for my confidence,’’ Wolfe said. ‘‘I think it makes people in the media and people all across the country believe in me more.
‘‘I’ve always felt I was a very effective football player. People are entitled to their opinions about who you do it against or how you do it, but I think after playing great against great teams, no one can argue with that.’’ He got no argument from OSU linebacker John Kerr, who said ‘‘Garrett Wolfe is an amazing back.
He is very talented, and the one thing he shows is every time there is a breakdown on the defense, he exploits it.’’ Northern Illinois plays Iowa on Oct. 28.


4. Perfect Storm: Coe, Cornell, Iowa, Iowa State, Luther, Northern Iowa and Upper Iowa are 1-0.
Good times.


FUMBLES
1. Outclassed: An occasional game between a really good I-AA team and a I-A team is tolerable.
But I-AA squads went 3-24 against I-A clubs last week, getting outscored by an average of 24.8 points per game.
I-AA Northeastern, 2-9 last year, lost 38-0 at Virginia Tech.
‘‘Tech, I think, was very ready for us,’’ said Northeastern Coach Rocky Hager.
In other words, the Hokies showed up for the kickoff.


2. Brown’s White Flag: Alabama- Birmingham had the ball with 2:22 left in its game at Oklahoma, trailing 24-17 with a fourth-and-12 at its 33.
Not an ideal situation, for sure.
But with no timeouts remaining, UAB Coach Watson Brown opted to punt rather than go for a first down and continue to try to drive for a game-tying score.
Oklahoma fielded the punt cleanly, then ran out the clock with handoffs to star running back Adrian Peterson.
Brown’s record as a I-A head coach is 77-135-1. Are you surprised?


3. Hog Containment: Last year, USC plastered Arkansas in Los Angeles, 70-17. The Razorbacks and a Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium record crowd of 76,564 lusted for vengeance when the Trojans came to Fayetteville.
A banner hung from the upper deck said ‘‘70: We Remember.’’ Then the game began. USC gave the Hogs another butchering, 50-14.
They’ll probably remember the 50, too.


4. Not In Iowa Anymore: Welcome to Stanford football, Bob Bowlsby.
The first game the Cardinal football team played with former Iowa athletics director Bowlsby as Stanford’s AD was a 48-10 loss at Oregon. The Cardinal hasn’t had a winning season since 2001. That doesn’t figure to change this year.
The good news: Stanford’s field hockey team beat Columbia on Sunday, 5-1.


FROM THE PAPERS
‘‘The only thing worse than a loss to a Division I-AA program in (Colorado’s) modern era were the Buffaloes’ back-to-back losses to Drake in Boulder in 1979 and ’80. ‘‘The victories were so inspiring for Drake, the Iowa school later dropped football.’’ — Terry Frei, Denver Post


FINAL WORD
‘‘I was actually kind of disappointed in it. I had high expectations. I’ve heard so much about it my whole life.
‘‘I came out here thinking it would be ridiculously big, but it really wasn’t. When you play in SEC stadiums, places like this are just big bowls.’’ — Vanderbilt defensive tackle Theo Horrocks, on playing at Michigan Stadium, the largest oncampus football stadium in the country.

Mike.Hlas@gazettecommunications.com