Who’s Your Daddy ?
Week nine of the NFL season and all the furor concerning the sporting weekend seems to be the college game this weekend between LSU (Tigers ) and Alabama that has the two top collegiate teams in an SEC matchup . Coaches Les Miles and Nick Saban , two coaches who between them have three BCS national titles . That being said , there’s a great deal at stake for both teams with each looking to keep their unbeaten records in tact.
Slide show for your perusal .
With this game being viewed as such a special event it’s hard to say how the fans should observe it , merely from the fact this won’t be for a national title . But herein lies the caveat , the loser may well have their hopes dash of quite possibly playing for the BCS championship . The pressures placed upon the college coach at the D1 level is unprecedented because apart from winning , a college football program and that deemed success, literally brings in tens of millions of dollars each year . And for the likes of Notre Dame , Ohio State , Texas Longhorns , Nebraska (Cornhuskers) , Penn State (Nittany Lions) , Michigan State (Spartans) , Oklahoma (Sooners) , Oklahoma State (Cowboys) , Michigan , Miami ( Hurricanes ), Florida State (Seminoles) , USC Trojans and Stanford .
Now with there being divisional realignment in the offing the college game now has more to do with money than ever before , rather than the competitiveness of games and the teams. Subverting this all has been the behind the scenes maneuvers specifically by ABC/ESPN and their commercial tie in with Texas in a joint venture to be known as the Longhorns Network . The purported revenues to be gained by the school will net the program an annual sum anywhere estimated in the region of $30- $55 million annually for the next two decades . Longhorns’ coach football Mack Brown and the school’s AD DeLoss Dodds are said to be the main architects behind the negotiation of this deal .
The Longhorns’ football program by itself nets the school in annual revenues, in excess of $120 million but the thought now the university will have its very own broadcast outlet televising all of the school’s athletics schedule has me wondering how they ( ESPN ) will be able to show any form of impartiality towards the school. Never mind that the fact that what the broadcast outlet purports to sports’ news journalism simply scours the bottom of the barrel in terms of integrity . The four letter network now appears to be giving MSNBC , CNN and Fox News a run for their money and that’s saying a damn lot at this juncture !
Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa , Alabama should see a hybrid of activity this weekend with this game . Players such as Trent Richardson , John Baites , A J McCarron and their teammates will put their prowess on display in front of a national television audience. For their part the LSU Tigers’ players this match-up will determine whether or not the rankings (AP) are at present justified . Certainly , Tigers’ coach Les Miles know that players such as Jarrett Lee , Spencer Ware , Michael Ford , Rueben Randle , Brandon Taylor , Eric Reid and Ryan Baker will be looking to prove that not only are the equal of their SEC counterparts but if anything far superior than the perceived preconceptions might well be .
The talk has been , with the Alabama playing at home the team will have a distinct advantage . But it’d be remiss to think that Les Miles and his coaching staff will not have prepared his players for this intriguing match-up of two very offensive minded teams . This much I do know this should be a highly competitive game between what I believe are a duo that are fairly evenly matched . The hype has been over the proven offense of Nick Saban’s team and the play of Trent Richardson , a noted Heisman Trophy candidate for this season . And the candidates there are quite formidable when you simply view the list of the prospective hopefuls in question.
Whomever , amongst this cavalcade of players on display at Bryant Denny Stadium this Saturday has an exemplary performance will undoubtedly see their name being quietly discussed discussed amongst the candidates in question , if not see their names fly up the ladder of nominees . Never mind being viewed as a first round draft pick for the 2012 NFL Draft .
I have to admit that there have been a litany of damn awful games this season and this Sunday unfortunately the NFL will once again throw one or two of them by way of the television scheduling. In all honesty , does anyone really want to see two ( 1-6 ) teams — face off against each other ? When the St Louis Rams take on the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale , Arizona . The fans will be asked to subject themselves to a game that in one form or another could take on a life of its own in terms the depths of mediocrity or highs of superlative performances . Given the fact that both of these two NFC teams rank in the conference and divisional standings I am not so sure that this game can actually live to any perceived expectation beyond being perhaps average at best !
Both the Arizona Cardinals and St Louis Rams are defensively challenged and rank near the bottom of the NFL in that specific category . Coaches Ken Whisenhunt and Steve Spagnuolo face a litany of problems concerning their respective teams . Injuries asides , it has more to do with getting their franchises to show some heart and play with a great deal more resolve . And that simply has not been evident with either team over the course of this season !
I am not so sure that the fans in attendance at Tempe Stadium can take pride in what they’re likely to witness but somehow there will be fervent support for the Arizona Cardinals by their fans . And no doubt the fans of the Rams are likely to make their presence felt . But herein lies the caveat for me this game with the two quarterbacks taking the stage could very well serve up a real clunker in terms of a performance . John Skelton and if healthy — Sam Bradford are likely to suit up for the Cardinals and Rams , respectively. In the unlikely event that Bradford is likely to go then starter’s backup A J Feeley is like to take his place . For the St Louis Cardinals I found it somewhat unbelievable that the organization brought in Kevin Kolb and then signed him to what I truly believe to be a ridiculous contract (5 yrs $63 million [$21 million guaranteed]) ! GM Rod Graves may well have been under the mistaken belief that he was getting a bargain when obtained the player from the Philadelphia Eagles . But Kolb has shown little if anything this season that would have anyone believe that he is indeed to thought of as a very good starting quarterback .
In terms of this game being a contest between two equal teams of compared ability , it would appear that the Arizona Cardinals might have a slight edge over their divisional rivals . With the added fact that Whisenhunt’s team has Larry Fitzgerald lining up on offense would give any team a distinct advantage . But such has been the mediocrity of the play within the NFC West on both sides of the ball that I think that this game could be a harbinger of the real inherent problems that the fans have seen throughout much of the season , in terms of the poor play within the NFL, amongst many of the mediocre teams !
As an avid fan of the NFL , I prefer to see competitive games within the league as a whole ! Now there seems to be this misnomer that there is now parity within game , but I for simply do not view it that way ! In reality what we do have however are some very good teams , some ordinary teams and than those that could be best described , as simply stinking up the joint ! And nowhere is that more representative at present that within the NFC West . Albeit , that the San Francisco 49ers (6-1) are laying claim that they are in the midst of a resurgent revival under first year coach John Harbaugh . The other occupant within division beyond the Niners , Arizona Cardinals and St Louis Rams are the woefully inept —- Seattle Seahawks (2-5 ) . The front office of the organization for the present under GM John Schneider and billionaire owner Paul Allen are still of the belief that the five year $37.5 million contract offered to head coach Pete Carroll will ultimately lead to success . If the Seahawks’ season this year is representative of that under the coach and his staff is indeed a sign of things to come , then they’re grossly overpaying for the privilege in retaining the coach .
Picture gallery for your perusal .
What thoughts if any do you have with regard to the scheduled college and NFL games taking place this weekend ? Are there any that you believe that truly stand out on either schedule ? Simply leave a comment as to your thoughts and thanks as always for the continued support as it greatly appreciated !
Picture and slide show details .
(1) Let’s get ready to rumble ! Alabama takes on LSU in Tuscaloosa , Alabama this weekend at Bryant Denny Stadium . AP Photo ….
(2) LSU fans arrive at the Tuscaloosa, Ala., train station on Friday, Nov. 4, 2011, for Saturday’s NCAA college football game between No. 1 ranked LSU and No. 2 ranked Alabama. AP Photo/The Tuscaloosa News, Michelle Lepianka Carter ….
(3) FILE – In this Nov. 6, 2010, file photo, Alabama running back Trent Richardson (3) rushes during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against LSU in Baton Rouge, La. Second-ranked Alabama are slated to host No. 1 LSU on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File ….
(4) TUSCALOOSA, AL – OCTOBER 22: Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts after his defense stopped Tennessee Volunteers on fourth down at Bryant-Denny Stadium on October 22, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images …
(5) Justin Coleman (27) of the Tennessee Volunteers breaks up a pass intended for DeAndrew White (2) of the Alabama Crimson Tide at Bryant-Denny Stadium on October 22, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images …..
(6) (6) FILE – In this Nov. 3, 2007 file photo , Alabama coach Nick Saban, front left, and LSU coach Les Miles, front right, shakes hands after LSU defeated Alabama 41-34 in an NCAA college football game in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Second-ranked Alabama are slated to host No. 1 LSU on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. AP Photo/Rob Carr, File …
(7) Kenny Hilliard (27) of the LSU Tigers scores a touchdown during the game against the Auburn Tigers at Tiger Stadium on October 22, 2011 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images …
(8) BALTIMORE – OCTOBER 30: Beanie Wells (26) of the Arizona Cardinals runs the ball against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on October 30. 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. The Ravens defeated the Cardinals 30-27 . Photo by Larry French/Getty Images …
(9) Kevin Kolb (4) of the Arizona Cardinals fumbles the ball after being tackled by Haloti Ngata (92) of the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on October 30. 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. The Ravens defeated the Cardinals 30-27. (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images) …
(10) Steven Jackson (39) of the St. Louis Rams hurdles Tracy Porter (22) and Scott Shanle (58) both of the New Orleans Saints at the Edward Jones Dome on October 30, 2011 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Rams beat the Saints 31-21 . Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images ….
(11) A.J. Feeley (4) of the St. Louis Rams fumbles the ball after being sacked by Malcolm Jenkins (27) of the New Orleans Saints at the Edward Jones Dome on October 30, 2011 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Rams beat the Saints 31-21. Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images …
(12) Head coach Steve Spagnuolo of the St. Louis Rams directs his team during a timeout against the New Orleans Saints at the Edward Jones Dome on October 30, 2011 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Rams beat the Saints 31-21. Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images …..
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