Friday, May 1, 2009


Happy Friday everyone. Let's take a gander at what's making news around the Big 10 this past week...


Sid Hartman breaking news? I'm as shocked as you are. But according to ol' Sid's colum in the Strib today, U of M AD Joel Maturi has secured a home-and-home series with the Texas Longhorns, with the dates still yet to be determined. Apparently this is a school coach Tim Brewster has always wanted to play (as you probably know Brewster was an assistant in Austin awhile back), and he continues to show he's not afraid to schedule the best schools in the country in the non-conference as the Gophs will host USC in 2010. Sure these are looking like probable losses right now, but I'd MUCH rather have the Gophers in what will surely be nationally televised games against monster opponents than Glen Masons' SEC-style non-conny cupcake 1-AA scheduling we used to have here. Bravo to Brewster and Maturi for taking risks so few schools south of the Mason-Dixon line are willing to take in their non-conny scheduling. This continues the Big 10's tradition of strong scheduling- or as I like to call it "Anti-SEC" scheduling, as earlier this week Michigan State announced they've extended their annual game with Notre Dame, and will also begin series with Alabama and West Virginia in the next few years.


I refuse to join Twitter. Absolutely, positively refuse. Yet because of my refusal, I'm apparently now missing out on breaking Gophers football news. Coach Brewster announced his 2009 captains not in a press release, not on the website, and not even on Facebook. Nope, he broke the news on Twitter, saying that QB Adam Weber and WR Eric Decker are the offensive captains, while Lee Campbell, Simoni Lawrence, Eric Small and Garrett Brown are the defensive captains. Maybe Brewster will start Twittering his play calls into the QB's and defense? Maybe he'll Twitter the refs to argue a call. Whatever.


Correct me if I 'm wrong, but I believe the last time this state produced the top ranked high school football player in the country was a Cretin-Derham Hall multi-sport star (somebody named Joe Mauer? Maybe you've heard of him). Well, a multi-sport star from that same school will begin the year as the top ranked player, and his name is Seantrel Henderson. Henderson is a 6'8 301 pound offensive tackle, who is also a helluva basketball player. It's rumored he wants to play both sports in college, and that both Coach Brewster and Gopher hoops coach Tubby Smith would allow him to do so if he chose The U. Minnesota is one of 14 schools on his not-so-short list of programs he's considering along with other Big 10 members Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Iowa, and Wisconsin, and national powers like Florida, USC, and Notre Dame. Way, way too early to gauge where the Gophers stand in this race, but it's definitely one we'll be keeping an eye on as they chase the biggest prospect (both figuratively and literally) this state has seen since Mauer.


...and to know who stole his medication. Ok just kidding on the second part. But the 82-year-old Penn State coach really, really does want the conference to add a 12th school. So far, his recruitment of others to join the fight is going about as well as Frank The Tank's call for people to go streaking with him. Everyone else seems fine with an 11 team conference, and personally I think the two division system and conference championship game hurts more than it helps. if they were to add a 12th school Notre Dame is also the only one that makes any sense, but there' s better chance of Lindsey Lohan finding sanity than the Irish joining a conference. Pitt is probably second on the list, but Dave Wannstead and his fireman's stache have about burned that football program to the ground, so I'm not sure what the appeal is there. Syracuse and Rutgers also have zero gridiron prowess. The Big 10 has a meeting this week, but it's doubtful anyone else will be joining Paterno up through the quad to the gymnasium. Maybe Spartans coach Mark Dantonio will bring his green hat? Yeah probably not.


Former Hoosier QB Kellen Lewis was booted off the team this week, a major blow to a program that can't exactly afford to lose talent. Lewis was a breakout star as a redshirt freshman in 2006, and was named 2nd team All-Big 10 in 2007, but last year the wheels totally fell off for Lewis and the offense as he lost his starting gig by the middle of the season. Coach Bill Lynch tried moving him to wide receiver this spring, but due to undisclosed disciplinary reasons, Lewis was given the heave-ho and won't be playing any position for IU this fall. Either as a testament to how good he was, or how bad Hoosier football has been, according to the article Lewis leaves "with the school record for touchdown passes (48), ranks third in career passing yards (6,395) and second in total yards (8,072). Lewis and former Big Ten MVP Antwaan Randle El are the only Indiana players to record 40 passing touchdowns, 6,250 passing yards, 8,000 total yards, 525 completions and 975 attempts in their careers." Not good news for an Indiana team that's being rebuilt for the umpteenth millionth time.


Gee, really? You mean the BCS, who is making billions of dollars from a bowl system that doesn't even come close to awarding a true national champion, thinks a playoff system that would take money out of their pockets is a bad idea? Really? What a shock! Thank God Congress is getting involved to get to the bottom of this whole BCS mess. It's not like there's any other pressing issues in the country to deal with. Also revealed at the BCS congressional hearings is that the sky is blue, water is wet, and Iowa football players can't stop getting arrested. These and other earth shattering revelations are brought to you by the US Government- wasting your tax dollars since the dawn of time.

Have a good weekend everybody.


Anonymous said...

You know, you can read his updates without actually joining Twitter:

It is just like any web page: point your browser to the URL and click.

It is the highlight of my day when he posts something. Very entertaining.

Jeff said...

That is good to know. Twitter just seems SO trendy right now and like something I wouldn't enjoy, and yet I should probably try it before bashing it. Thanks for the heads up on that.