Following Florida State’s dramatic win over Auburn last night in the National Championship game, the 2013-2014 College Bowl Season is officially over. Now we can look back and reflect on which conferences were the most successful, making the most of their bowl games, and which ones did not do as well. Read more…
The regionals are complete and now its on to the super regionals. This is the last stop before Omaha and the College World Series. So far there hasn’t been any real surprises this year, aka Kent State last year. There has been only two upsets with the biggest being Oregon, who was the #8 national seed, being knocked out by Rice. The other is Virginia Tech being knocked out by Oklahoma. Top national seed North Carolina was taken to extra innings by Fla Atlantic in an elimination game but other than that it has been chalk.
The ACC will have their four remaining teams play host in the super regionals while Louisville, a future ACC member, has also earned a spot. The SEC also has four teams remaining but only two of them will be hosting. The Big 12 and the Pac 12 each has two teams remaining. The next round of games will be a beast of three series which will run from Friday, June 7 until Monday, June 10.
Here is a run down on the super regionals.
Ohio State president E. Gordon Gee has been known to put his foot in his mouth from time to time only to later issue an apology. He did it again this past December at a meeting for the schools Athletic Counsel which The Associated Press obtained a recording of under a public record request.
On the recording Gee told members of the counsel that he negotiated with Notre Dame officials during his first term at OSU. Notre Dame has resisted Big Ten courtship for years and last September announced that they would instead join the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Gee remarks specifically referred to Rev. Ned Joyce, Notre Dames longtime vice president, who died in 2004. His comments included “The fathers are holy on Sunday, and they are holy hell the rest of the week.” His comments drew laughter from the crowd. “You just cant trust those damn Catholics on a Thursday or Friday, and so, literally, I can say that.” said Gee who is a Mormon.
Baseballs post season was set Monday afternoon and North Carolina incredible season was rewarded with the #1 national seed. The other national seeds in order are Vanderbilt, Oregon St, LSU, Cal St Fullerton, Virginia, Florida St and Oregon.
North Carolina (52-8) won its first regular season champion since 1990 and it’s coach Mike Fox’s program first #1 seed. They have been a top 8 seed 6 of the last 7 years. They are the only team in the nation that hasn’t lost consecutive games this season. They will open their bid to be the first top seeded team to win the championship since the 1999 Miami team against Canisius (42-15), who is making their first appearance in the tournament.
The Louisville Cardinals (46-12) will begin their quest to make it to Omaha for the first time since 2007 against Bowling Green (24-29) on Friday at 6pm. They missed out on a national seed but they will host the regional. Also in their region is future ACC foe Miami (36-23) who has made the tournament for a record 41st straight year.
The SEC led all conferences with a record-tying 9 bids. The ACC received 8 while the Pac 12 and Sun Belt received 4 bids each. The committee snubbed the Big East by handing out only 2 bids, to Louisville and UConn. Although the SEC received more bids, the ACC has the upper hand with 5 teams playing host, not including Louisville, while the SEC has only 4 teams hosting a regional. Also the ACC received more national seeds than the SEC, 3-2.
The tournament opens this Friday with 16 four team double-elimination regionals. Those winners will advance to next weeks best of 3 super regionals. The remaining 8 teams will then be broken down into 2 double-elimination brackets in the College World Series in Omaha, Neb. Here is a look at the regionals and super regional line up. Read more…
Before we discuss Florida State’s recruiting class, I’d like to give you some context:
A typical college football coaching staff has approximately 10 coaches. Head coach, offensive and defensive coordinators, and position coaches (quarterback, running back, wide receiver, tight end, offensive line, defensive line, linebackers, secondary). The list above represents the coaches Florida State lost in one off-season; the most recent defection to a rival, two weeks from signing day, hurt the most. As soon as Jimbo Fisher hires his last assistant, I will follow-up with profiles on each of the new coaches.
But let that last point sink in some—Jimbo didn’t just finalize this class without an assistant coach, but that assistant coach happened to be his best recruiter who recruits the Miami territory. And as he admitted in his post-signing day press conference, Jimbo found himself doing the grunt work for the home stretch.
After all the dust settled, Florida State signed another top 10 class. Many insiders are a touch disappointed because it could have been better. There were a few that got away, like Denver Kirkland (OL) and Stacy Coley (WR). More reason for concern is the lack of offensive line depth. Florida State easily expected to sign 5-6 offensive lineman and only came away with 3 true offensive lineman and, potentially, a tight-end turned tackle in a few years time. The rest of the class, however, is absolutely stacked.
The three best players in this class are on defense: Demarcus Walker (DE), Matthew Thomas (LB), and Jalen Ramsey (CB). All are blue chips and considered top 5 at their position. Meanwhile, Florida State’s seemingly singular focus on offense was speed. And a lot of it. For the second consecutive year, Florida State may have signed the fastest player in the country (last year it was Marvin Bracy, this year it is Kermit Whitfield). Bracy and Whitfield have broken all types of track records. Bracy is most known for his performance in this race. And for the naysayers, yes, he’s fast in pads, too. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t also show you Kermit Whitfield’s speed as well. Jimbo’s strategy seems simple: a big, punishing, suffocating defense and burning speed on offense. The SEC is awaiting a challenger to their style of smash mouth football but I think Jimbo is building the blueprint to challenge and break the paradigm.
And it all ties to the types of players Jimbo signs. Athletes. Smart kids with character. Some blue chippers, some with chips on their shoulder. This class will not go down as heralded as others, but these are handpicked players by Jimbo. They fit the blueprint to a T. This class also seems awfully reminiscent of FSU’s class of 2009 and 2010 — classes that are sending 13 players to the NFL combine. It was this group that finally turned the corner for the program. And each and every year, Jimbo just keeps adding to that foundation.
Lastly, looking around the rest of the ACC, and I’m sure my colleagues will correct me, it seems the top third of the conference is doing just fine in football performance. However, the bottom two-thirds of the conference turned in weak performances. I’m a little concerned by this. The ACC will get better contracts for having a solid top-to-bottom slate. The ACC is not capable of offering that right now, but then again, if you take away the SEC’s championship caliber teams, they aren’t all that different from the other conferences.